An emergency dentist is a good number to keep handy in case of a dental condition that comes up during off-hours. Pain or conditions that develop on the weekend, a holiday or in the evening can cause stress and alarm. Not just that, the pain often associated with dental problems is oftentimes unbearable. It is…
Are Antibiotics Recommended Before my Visit to the Dentist?
There are certain patients who may be encouraged or required to take antibiotics before they visit the dentist. It is important to fully understand whether or not you should take antibiotics. Be sure to consult with your dentist if you have any heart conditions before receiving treatment.
Antibiotics and visiting the dentist
There are several reasons why a patient may need to take antibiotics before seeing the dentist. The following is everything to know about the role antibiotics play before the dentist and who should and should not take them.
The role of antibiotics before the dentist
Patients with heart conditions may be required to take antibiotics before their dentist appointment. This is especially true if they are scheduled to undergo a more invasive procedure. The main purpose of antibiotics before dental work is to prevent what is known as infective endocarditis. This is a bacterial infection that causes the heart valves and heart lining to become inflamed. It can cause serious health complications such as heart failure.
Antibiotics work to fight any potential infection that could cause damage to the heart. They work to significantly lower the risk of infective endocarditis.
Who should take antibiotics before a dentist visit?
Not every heart condition or prior heart procedure yields the need for the patient to take antibiotics before visiting the dentist. But, there are certain procedures or conditions that may place the individual at higher risk of infective endocarditis. The following are heart problems that often require antibiotics before a dentist visit:
- Prosthetic heart valve
- Prior heart valve repair
- History of endocarditis
- Cyanotic congenital heart disease
- Heart transplant
Each case is different, and the risk of infective endocarditis is unique for each patient. So, be sure to consult with your dentist about what precautions should be taken before your next procedure.
Who does not need to take antibiotics before a dentist visit?
Most patients do not need to take antibiotics before a dentist visit. As it pertains to other heart conditions that do not typically require antibiotics, there are many. The following are heart problems and several more common conditions that do not typically require the patient to take antibiotics before receiving dental work:
- Coronary artery disease
- Atrial septal defect
- Heart murmurs
- Mitral valve prolapse
- Mild tricuspid regurgitation
Of course, there are many other conditions that do not require antibiotics, including the use of defibrillators or pacemakers. However, you should always consult with a dentist before receiving treatment if you have any heart condition.
Talk to a dentist about antibiotics
Antibiotics work well in preventing infective endocarditis during and after dental procedures. They can give patients with heart complications peace of mind to know they are safe. If you have neglected dental work in the past due to your heart condition, then talk to a dentist today about whether or not antibiotics are right for you.
Feel free to give our dentist office a call at any time to schedule a visit and to find out how we can help you stay comfortable and in good health during a dental procedure.
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