What is a tooth socket graft?
After a tooth is removed, a small socket is left behind. Because these sockets are often sensitive, we suggest socket preservation following extractions.
Socket preservation is meant to enhance the appearance of your teeth and gums after tooth extraction and reduce the risk of complications if you end up getting a dental implant sometime later. A recent study showed that socket preservation works to reduce vertical and horizontal alterations in the bone near the area of tooth extraction.
While there are some who don’t consider this procedure necessary, there are valuable reasons for performing it. Keep reading to see why our team at integratedDENTAL recommends it.
PREVENTING A DRY SOCKET
A blood clot will form over the healing extraction area to protect it, but if this clot is knocked loose a dry socket can form, which is a painful post-operative complication that requires immediate attention. By protecting the socket with bone graft we can also preserve the alveolar ridge helping to ensure you have enough bone to replace the extracted tooth with an implant in the future.
WHAT DOES SOCKET PRESERVATION DO?
Once a tooth is removed, it is common for the underlying bone to decay. But when this happens, gaps can start to appear between the teeth or the teeth can become misaligned. For these reasons, we seek to perform socket preservation right after extracting the tooth. A socket preservation procedure has us place a bone graft inside the socket. The graft comes from human bone, bone from another animal (such as a cow), or synthetic material.
RECOVERY PERIOD AND POST-OP CARE
You must take good care of the area near the socket following a tooth extraction. This will protect your gumline and decrease discomfort as the affected area heals. You may even need to refrain from brushing your teeth for up to a week following the extraction, even if you use a toothbrush with extra-soft bristles.
For a while after the tooth extraction, you will need to avoid any activities that increase pressure in the mouth, like using a straw or smoking. Also avoid consuming hard foods, as they can dislodge the blood clot and cause a dry socket.
Tooth extractions and socket preservations are straightforward procedures. Nevertheless, don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions or concerns.