When can I let go of my dry socket fear?
June 24, 2012 10:57 AM   Subscribe

Wisdom teeth were yanked out Friday- when can I quit being paranoid about developing a dry socket?

I had my two wisdom teeth on the right pulled on Friday- they came out pretty easily and did not require stitches or anything other than local anesthetic. I don't smoke, haven't used a straw, and have been regularly doing the salt-water rinses. However, I'm seeing conflicting information about when dry sockets develop- my aftercare sheet has no timeline about it, and various Google searches have not gotten me anywhere. One site says three to five days after the procedure, another one to three days, and this AskMefi answer says a week. When am I out of the woods for real?
posted by shes_ajar to Health & Fitness (6 answers total)
I developed dry socket within three days after having a molar removed. It wasn't actually that bad or painful. It was more annoying than anything else because I had to drive to the dentist twice a week to get it treated, until they finally gave me the stuff to just do it from home.

I knew it was dry socket because it just continued to really hurt all the time even after three days. I'd had enough teeth pulled to know that it wasn't healing normally.

I heal very slowly, and there were other complications, so it was not surprising that I got dry socket and that it took a long time to get better.
posted by k8lin at 11:10 AM on June 24, 2012

I just had mine done. Dentist said within 3 days I'd know and it wouldn't be subtle, after that I'd be fine. I was fine.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 12:38 PM on June 24, 2012

It took six days for mine to start hurting. I knew something was wrong when on day six it suddenly hurt much worse than the past few days.

Don't stress over it too bad. If it happens they can pack it with some medicated gauze nowadays that took almost all the pain away. I heard and read a ton of horror stories but I think in the past few years the gauze trick has become standard.
posted by Octoparrot at 1:52 PM on June 24, 2012

Yeah, I had dry sockets and they packed medicated gauze in them and then it was fine. Extra painkillers was a bonus, too. Mine had the unfortunate onset in the middle of the night, when I could do nothing about it. I had to wait until the clinic opened in the morning, which made for a miserable 7 hours or so.
posted by zardoz at 8:25 PM on June 24, 2012

I got my wisdom teeth out on a Friday in December, and knew I had dry socket on Monday (but didn't see my surgeon until Tuesday, for various reasons). It was horribly painful for the day of non-treatment, but as above, they packed it with a weird-tasting gauze and gave me a new Vicodin scrip. It was incredibly painful and exhausting, but mostly because I refused to take off work - that was my being an idiot that harmed me.

You will know if you have it, and your surgeon should be able to fit you in easily if needed - the gauze is a five-minute procedure. Good luck, and enjoy your applesauce and mashed potatoes!
posted by quadrilaterals at 7:05 PM on June 25, 2012

So far, so good. Thanks everyone.
posted by shes_ajar at 4:00 PM on June 27, 2012

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