Toluca Lake Dentist Shares Information About Medications Affecting Oral Health

Written by Dr. McKay on Dec 28, 2021

Just as the foods and drinks that you consume can impact your oral health, the medications that you take, either daily or sporadically, can also affect your smile. Keep reading to learn more from our Toluca Lake dentists about a few medication side effects that contribute to dental issues.

Dry mouth is one common side effect, caused of everything from antihistamines to painkillers. Unfortunately, chronic dry mouth creates an oral environment in which bacteria thrive. Since saliva is your body’s natural way of neutralizing bacteria and re-mineralizing enamel, a lack of saliva leaves your mouth susceptible to bacteria build-up. Don’t ignore chronic dry mouth—talk to your dentist about steps you can take to refresh your smile.

Another side effect that can hurt your oral health is acid reflux. Acid reflux occurs when acids from your digestive tract move up through your esophagus and enter your throat and mouth. Because stomach acid is pretty harsh and abrasive, your dental enamel and oral tissues can begin to break down after acid exposure. If you are regularly dealing with acid reflux, please talk to your doctor about how you can address this health problem.

Finally, let’s talk about one medication that affects pediatric patients, specifically: tetracycline. Tetracycline is a commonly used antibiotic, and for most people its use is unproblematic. However, when pediatric patients—with developing permanent teeth—use tetracycline, they risk developing adult teeth that are stained or pitted. Talk to your dentist about alternatives to tetracycline when dealing with young patients.

As you are caring for your smile, keep in mind that absolutely everything you consume can affect oral health—this includes medications! Our Toluca Lake dentists are here to answer any additional questions you may have, and to give you recommendations on safeguarding your smile. You can reach our team by giving our office a call, or by using the Contact Us page on our website.