Are Your Medications Hurting Your Smile?
posted: Mar 19, 2015.
White spots on the inside of your cheeks.
Unexplainable burning pain in your mouth.
Excessive tooth decay.
All of these are common side effects of medications—both those prescribed by doctors and over the counter.
Many medications have negative side effects on your oral health, so it’s important for you to let your White Bear Lake dental team know if you are taking anything, and if so, what. It’s also important for you to let us know if you’ve been experiencing any unusual symptoms, such as those mentioned above. The more information you’re willing to share with us, the more accurately we can determine the cause of your discomfort and hopefully find an alternative for you.
Common Side Effects of Medication
Dry mouth is one of the most common side effects of medications. Not only is dry mouth uncomfortable, but also, it greatly increases your risk for tooth decay. Saliva helps to keep food from collecting around your teeth, and it neutralizes any acids produced by plaque. When your mouth is dry, those acids remain harmful, and can damage the hard surfaces of your teeth.
Additionally, the soft oral tissues of your mouth—such as your gums, cheeks lining and tongue—can be affected by the medications you’re taking as well. For example, if you use an inhaler, you could develop a condition called candidiasis—or better known as Thrush. Thrush is a fungal infection that appears as white spots in your mouth, and that can be very painful. To prevent this infection, try rinsing after using your inhaler.
Cancer treatments are also known to cause oral health problems. If possible, talk to us before beginning treatment, that way we can ensure your mouth is healthy, or, if necessary, prescribe treatment to help you maintain good oral health throughout the duration of your medical treatment.
We like to know what medications you’re taking, that way we can work with your physician—if possible—to keep you in the best possible overall health. When you visit our office, don’t hesitate to let us know about any current, past or chronic health conditions, or to provide a brief health history that includes both prescription and over-the-counter products. And always let us know if there are any changes in your health or medication use.
At Lakeshore Family Dentistry, we believe in providing a safe and comfortable environment in which you feel 100% comfortable sharing important information such as your medical history. Open and honest communication with our patients is key to providing the comfortable and outstanding dental care that our patients have learned to expect.
To schedule your visit with us, call 651-429-3348 today!