Top Dental Elf Blogs of 2015


Derek Richards presents the top Dental Elf Blogs of 2015. Highlights include eating disorders and oral health, the long awaited Cochrane Review of water fluoridation and the update of the NICE guidance on infective endocarditis.

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Dry socket prevention: eugenol dressing or chlorhexidine gel?


This trial compared eugenol dressing or chlorhexidine gel for dry socket prevention against no intervention. Both agents reduced the incidence of dry socket but the reduction was greater with eugenol.

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Dry socket – oral contraceptives may increase incidence


This review included 16 low-moderate quality studies, which overall suggest that the use of oral contraceptives leads to a higher incidence of dry socket. Risk ratio = 1.80 (95% CI; 1.33–2.43).

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Trial suggests that post extraction use of warm saline mouth rinse reduces complications


The use of warm salt water mouthrinses as part of a post extraction regimen is a commonly taught, yet as the authors of this trial found there seems to be little objective evidence for its effectiveness.  The aim of this study was to determine the beneficial effect of different warm saline rinse regimens on the [read the full story…]

Guidance on the management of acute dental problems from SDCEP

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The Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) has recently launched guidance for the management of patients with acute dental problems. The scope of the guidance is to:- Encourage a consistent approach to the management of acute dental problems to reduce avoidable variation in practice Improve the quality of unscheduled clinical care for patients with acute [read the full story…]

Moderate evidence that chlorhexidine rinse or gel provides a benefit in preventing dry socket


Teeth are extracted every day in dental surgeries throughout the world because of tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease. Alveolar osteitis (dry socket) is a complication that can follow an extraction with estimates of its incidence ranging from <1-37.5%.  Typically a blood clot is absent in the socket and the patients have pain in and [read the full story…]

Moderate evidence that prophylactic antibiotics reduce the risk of infection, dry socket and pain following third molar extraction but benefit not enough to recommend routine use

Logo of The Cochrane Collaboration

Tooth extraction is probably the most commonly conducted surgical procedure.  Teeth are normally extracted because of severe dental caries or periodontal (gum) infection, although they are also removed because they are poorly aligned or developed.  To aim of this Cochrane review was to determine the effect of antibiotic prophylaxis on the development of infectious complications [read the full story…]

Some limited evidence to support the use of chlorhexidine to prevent dry socket


Dry socket (alveolar osteitis) socket is a painful complication of  tooth extraction that occurs in about  5%  of  extractions of permanent tooth. It is more common following the extraction of wisdom teeth. That aim of this review was to assess whether chlorhexidine, when compared to placebo and/or other interventions, reduced the incidence of alveolar osteitis [read the full story…]

Traumatic extraction carries a high risk of a painful dry socket

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Alveolar osteitis or dry socket is a common and painful complication of tooth extraction, occurring following about 5% of all tooth extractions.  The aetiology of this complication is unclear and it has been associated with a wide range of risk factors. the aim of this study was to assess the relation between 8 risk factors [read the full story…]