Posted on: 3 July 2019
Many prescription and over-the-counter medications can affect your teeth and gums. In addition, dietary supplements can also affect your oral health, so it is important that you bring all your supplement and medication information with you when you visit the dental office so that the information can be noted in your chart. Here are some medication and dietary supplement side effects that can affect your oral health and what you can do about them.
When your mouth gets too dry as a result of autoimmune disorders, salivary gland dysfunction, or as a result of medication side effects, you may be at risk for cavities and gum disease. Optimal salivary flow helps wash away oral bacteria so that you don't develop carious teeth and gingivitis.
Medications that may contribute to oral dryness include antihistamines, blood pressure medications, diuretics, decongestants, anti-anxiety medications, and prescription pain medications. If you suffer from dry mouth, talk to your doctor about changing your medication, and make sure you see your dentist on a regular basis. In the meantime, drink plenty of water, suck on sugarless candies, cut down on smoking, and limit your intake of caffeinated and alcoholic beverages.
Certain medications and dietary supplements can cause bleeding gums. It is important that you tell your dentist about these medications and supplements so that extra care can be taken to minimize bleeding during checkups and dental procedures.
The supplements and medications that are commonly associated with bleeding gums include aspirin, prescription anticoagulants, garlic supplements, fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids, and magnesium supplements.
It is important to note, that even if you experience bleeding gums when you brush and floss, never stop taking your anticoagulant medication or aspirin, especially if your doctor prescribed them to prevent a heart attack or stroke. Doing so may raise your risk for a dangerous blood clot.
To minimize your risk for bleeding when brushing your teeth, use a toothbrush with soft bristles, and be gentle. Also, avoid flossing too aggressively because this may lead to abrasions on your gum tissue, triggering a bleeding event.
If you take any of the above medications or dietary supplements, let your dentist know. It is important that you maintain a meticulous oral hygiene routine even though your gums may bleed while brushing and flossing your teeth. Some people are hesitant to maintain their oral hygiene routines because of the medication-related bleeding risk; however, this may predispose you to cavities and gum disease.Share