Why It’s Important to Tell Your Dentist About Allergies or Medical Conditions
At the Belmont Dental Group, we want to make sure we are always providing you with the best care we can, which includes making sure each patient is receiving treatment that is safe for them. Just as you would tell your medical doctor if you have had any changes in medical information, we rely on you providing us with that same information. It’s important to tell your hygienists and dentists about your allergies and medical conditions so that we can adjust care to fit your needs. Some examples of the important medical information we want to know include:
Allergies – A dentist needs to know about your allergies to avoid exposing you to things that can trigger them. A common allergen that you can be exposed to is latex, since medical gloves often have latex in them. If you are allergic to any medications, we will tailor our dental care to exclude drugs that might be harmful and cause adverse reactions.
Heart Conditions – A heart condition and any treatment you receive are important factors for dentists to be aware of for things like anesthetics. Let us know if you have a heart defect, recent heart surgery, artificial heart valves, and other conditions.
Joint Replacement Surgery – You have a higher chance of infection after having knee, hip, or shoulder joint replacement surgery. Doctors and dentists recommend waiting 3 to 6 months after any kind of joint replacement surgery before coming in for a cleaning or other dental treatment. By letting us know that you have completed the surgery and the waiting period, our dentists may be able to prescribe antibiotics for you to take during or after a dental procedure.
Epilepsy, Asthma, or Breathing Issues – Any of these medical conditions will affect how a dentist provides care to a patient. For Instance, if you are diagnosed with one or more of these problems, we use that information when choosing medication for you to take during or after a procedure.
Medications – Whether a doctor prescribes a medication or you take an over-the-counter option, dentists need to know about it. Medications can interact with local anesthesia and have side effects leading to dental problems.
Medications that Dry the Mouth – Did you know that there are over 500 medications that are known to dry out your mouth? These include antidepressants, some antibiotics, some pain medications, epilepsy medication, and inhalers. It’s important to be aware of this side effect, and inform us if you are taking any of these, as dry mouth can leave you susceptible to cavities and gum disease.
Herbal or Alternative Medication – While you may not immediately think that it’s important to tell your dentist about the herbal medications or supplements that you take, trust us when we say it is. Certain medications and supplements can have serious side effects if combined with other medication involved with dental surgery. Some herbal medications will react with local anesthesia, weakening or strengthening the efficiency of the anesthesia.
Remember, on the other end of your teeth, is you! Be sure we know what you are taking and what allergies and medical conditions you have, so we can ensure a safe and stress-free dental visit every time you come in. Feel free to contact us when you need dental care or keep us updated when you have a change in your medical information. You can call us at (617) 484-2431 to speak with our staff about scheduling dental care.