Antibiotics and Family Dentistry: What You Should Know

Posted on: September 2, 2015

Family DentistryAntibiotics and family dentistry have had a long and accomplished history together. With the discovery of antibiotics and their successful incorporation in the tools we use as a family dentistry practice, we have been able to successfully change the conversation about the severity of dental infections, specifically bacterial infections. When Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in 1928, he gave modern medicine the solution to many problems and cures that had remained elusive until that point. With family dentistry, we have learned to use a measured and holistic approach to treating patients with any medication, including, but not limited to, antibiotics. Often, patients will question why we take such a measured approach, and the answer is simple. We believe that minimal introduction of medications like antibiotics allows your body to heal on its own, which is far better in the long run. In fact, over the last several years, we have seen a rapid increase of bacterial infections across the spectrum of the medical world that are resistant to antibiotics. This is because of the overuse of antibiotics and the mutation of bacteria to counter their effects. Our measured approach seeks to ensure that when we use a measure to fight a dental infection you may have, you have all the experience of our family dentistry behind you, and there is no question about the effectiveness of the treatment. It is a more scientific way of treating problems and far more effective. Over the course of our practice, we often come face to face with myths and urban legends that have permeated popular culture about important medical remedies like antibiotics.

For family dentistry, it is important to make sure you are educated when making decisions that affect your health. One of these myths influenced by the way you feel is the use of antibiotics. Most people we help believe that antibiotics are a cure-all. This myth continues to perpetuate because when we do prescribe antibiotics, it is very selectively and effectively. As a result, the pain a patient feels, the fever, or even the swelling tends to go away quickly, helping to build the legend of antibiotics. The reality is that the body does all the heavy lifting itself. The antibiotics are designed to help balance the natural antibodies with the invading infection. Once this happens, your body takes care of the problem. In fact, in 60 percent of cases, the body’s own antibodies will take care of an infection without any assistance at all.

Another popular myth that swirls around family dentistry and antibiotics is the idea that there is some kind of ritual around taking antibiotics, like ensuring you take them at the same time every day and if you do not complete the course, the infection will return. The bottom line in family dentistry is that we will get to the root of the infection long before it has any opportunity to return. It is also a fact that using antibiotics, because of the element of your own antibodies, is an inexact science, which we navigate using our experience and learned skills to the best of our professional ability.

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