Infected Wisdom Tooth Socket

I’ve had all my wisdom teeth removed but one socket is giving me fits. I noticed some bad breath, but thought it had more to do with my Invisalign. I went to see my Invisalign dentist and she did some poking around. She found one socket that is oozing puss when pressed. I’m thinking I need to get rid of it and started doing a rinse with Listerine but that’s not helping. What do I do?


Dear Kevin,

Man grabbing his jaw in pain

I’m very glad you’re under the care of a dentist for your Invisalign treatment and not doing one of those online Invisible braces kits. That would have been a disaster for your oral health and you could have ended up losing some teeth. This infection needs to be dealt with before it becomes serious. Listerine isn’t going to be enough.

I would schedule an emergency dental appointment with your regular dentist, if it is different from your Invisalign dentist. Then, this needs to be attacked in a two-pronged way. First, internally. Ask your dentist to prescribe you 150 mg of Clindamycin four times per day. You’ll want a ten-day prescription.

Next, you want to attack it directly. To do that you want to purchase some 3% hydrogen peroxide. You can purchase that almost anywhere. Then create a 50-50 mixture of the peroxide with some salt. Ask your dentist to provide you with an irrigating needle. This will allow you to get the solution into the socket. Then, I would rinse this socket out every time you eat. When you eat things are getting trapped in there which is causing bacteria to build up and feed the infection. This should help get you on the right track.

After your antibiotic prescription is completely finished, the infection should be gone. Then, you can back off and only irrigate the socket once a day. You’ll still want to do it while food and debris gets in there.

This blog is brought to you by Baton Rouge Dentist Dr. Steven Collins.