We are used to having our dentists clean our teeth, perform orthodontic procedures, and give pain medications if we feel discomfort after each process. But can dentists prescribe antibiotics the same way doctors can? Let’s also find out what antibiotics they can prescribe and what they are for.
Can dentists prescribe antibiotics?
Yes. Tooth infections caused by an injury, tooth decay, or even past dental procedures can transform from a simple toothache to a bacterial spread if left untreated. This bacterial infection may cause severe pain, swelling, and sensitivity to the teeth with the presence of abscess or pus. The spread of the disease may even reach your brain and become a life-threatening condition if no direct treatment to address the infection is offered.
What common antibiotics can a dentist prescribe?
Although dentists can prescribe antibiotics to their patients, we must know that not all tooth problems need antibiotics. Not all dental infections need antibacterials and other forms of medications. It is still your dentist’s educated decision if your condition requires antibiotics.
Antibiotics prescribed by dentists are usually for severe infection that may have extensively spread and has the potential to affect your immune system. Common antibiotic medications used by dentists include penicillin, amoxicillin, metronidazole, erythromycin, or clindamycin. The use of these medications depends on the type of bacteria that caused the infection. Your history of allergy to certain medicines will also rule out your use of specific antibiotics. You should inform your dentist of any allergies you may have to avoid unwanted complications and side effects.
How long should you take the antibiotics?
Patients take most antibiotics for a typical time period of one week. Your dentist may indicate taking the prescribed antibiotic two to four times a day depending on the type of antibiotic and the severity of the infection. Follow the instructions of your dentist about how to take the medication. Some antibiotics are gastric irritants, so you should take them after meals to avoid stomach upset. Moreover, inform your dentist about the medications you are currently taking in order to avoid interference with the prescribed antibiotic.
What else can you do to fight dental infection?
While taking the antibiotics promptly, you can relieve the symptoms of your tooth infection by proper cleaning of your teeth, rinsing your mouth with warm water and salt solution, and gently chewing your food. Pain medication bought over-the-counter can also alleviate the discomfort.
Dentists prescribing antibiotics: The conclusion
Can dentists prescribe antibiotics? Yes, they can!
If you have a dental infection, consult the dentist as soon as possible. They are the ones who would know if you need antibiotics and what type of antibiotic medication will address your problem efficiently. Once the dentist prescribes the antibiotics, follow his instruction on how to take them and for how long. Neglecting this information about the use of these medicines may further complicate your dental condition.