The Mouth-Body Connection Part 1

The Mouth Body Connection – Part 1

Common Medications: How they can Affect your Mouth

Advice form Dr. Mead’s family dentist practice in Purcell on how to minimize side effects that common medication might have our your mouth and teeth.

We take medication with our mind focused on alleviating a form of pain, or prevent a form of disease.

Whether it is over the counter, or prescribed by a physician, we will generally assume medication is “safe” to take. Therefore we may or may not spend an extra two minutes on possible effects on other parts of our body. Dental care provider Dr. Mead advises on what we should take into account when taking common forms of medicines.

Antihistamines:

It is beautiful spring. With an overabundance of blossoms, to the dismay of many, also comes an abundance of pollen. While the pharmaceutical industry revels in sales of “harmless” antihistamines, and the allergic person sighs when relief from their predicament sets in, rarely do we consider possible side effects. Antihistamines often result in a reduced production of saliva. Yet saliva is what protects our teeth and gums from harmful acids attacking the enamel, and keeps the inside of our mouth protected from germs. Lack of saliva equals reduced protection. If you have to take antihistamines, you can compensate by drinking smaller amounts of water more often, to keep your mouth moist, or chew sugar free gum to stimulate the production of saliva.

Anticoagulants:

There are some indications for which medications are prescribed that prevent the clotting of blood, especially in the case of stroke prevention, and chronic heart disease. Aspirin, heparin, and warfarin all are commonly used anticoagulants. However, if you need to undergo dental surgery, or any surgery for that matter, it is imperative you consult with your dental care provider first, in order to avoid excess bleeding and potentially life threatening conditions.

Immuno-suppressive medications and chemotherapy:

Strong chemicals as prescribed in cases of AIDS, and cancer radiation therapy, can cause stomatitis, a painful inflammation of the inner lining of the soft tissues of your mouth. Let Dr. Mead and his able team assist you in prescribing alleviating procedures that will help heal your soft tissues, as well as advise you on a proper diet. Avoid unnecessary spicy or hot foods that would further irritate your condition.

Follow us in Part 2 of The Mouth Body Connection, when we talk about how ailments that affect our teeth, gums and mouth can be indications for diseases elsewhere in the body.

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