4 Medications Which Can Damage Your Oral Health

Posted on: 14 March 2017

Many people do not realise that common medications could be harming their dental health. Below is a guide to 4 drugs which could be causing damage to your teeth and gums.

Antacids

Antacids often contain high levels of sugar. The sugar is added so that the chewable tablets taste pleasant. However, this sugar will coat your teeth and provide an ideal food source for bacteria. Antacids can also cause your mouth to become dry, which creates the perfect environment for bacteria growth and can result in tooth decay. You should cut down on the number of antacids you take or opt for sugar-free versions of the medication.

Pain Medications

Pain medication such as opiates and anti-inflammatory drugs have been shown to inhibit the production of saliva in the mouth. Occasional use of painkillers is unlikely to cause major dental health problems. However, if you have been prescribed painkillers for daily use, it could result in severe oral health issues. You can combat this by ensuring that you take regular sips of water throughout the day in order to keep your mouth moist. To help to stimulate saliva glands, you should consider starting to chew sugar-free gum on a regular basis.

Antidepressants

A study carried out in 2016 found an association between people who use antidepressants and the rate at which dental implants failed. While this small scale study will need to be followed up in order to establish the exact link, antidepressant use has already been identified as a contributor to increased levels of bone loss. Those who take antidepressants for an extended period have an increased chance of developing gum disease, tooth decay and bad breath. It is important that you take extra care of your dental health when taking antidepressants.

Corticosteroids

Corticosteroids can be used to treat a number of health issues such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and asthma. However, if you use corticosteroids for an extended period, it can lead to calcification of the pulp within your teeth. When this calcification occurs, it can cause a sudden onset of severe pain, dental abscesses and oral infections. If you are taking corticosteroids to treat a chronic condition, it can be hard to mitigate the impact they may be having on your dental health. However, it is important that you inform your dentist of any medication you are currently taking.

If you have any concerns about the impact a medication is having on your dental health, you should contact a dentist today. General dentistry procedures could be used to help improve your oral health.

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