Antibiotic Premedication

Do you take medication to help regulate a specific medical condition, like a heart irregularity? Have you ever had invasive surgery, like a bone or joint replacement?

In the past, a physician or dentist may have advised persons with conditions like these to take antibiotics before a routine dental procedure. The goal was to reduce the chance of a possible infection in the patient, a practice known as antibiotic prophylaxis. However, more and more evidence indicates that this practice should be limited to a much smaller subset of patients than previously believed.

As your trusted Carmichael dental clinic, the Marconi Dental Group is very conservative when prescribing antibiotics in such circumstances. Let us explain why.

Lowering Risk

While dental procedures may release bacteria into your blood, the truth is your immune system can deal with a lot. In fact, people who are at slightly higher than average risk of infection are already exposed to oral bacteria by means of routine activities like chewing, brushing, and flossing. The research also indicates that for most patients, the risk of adverse reaction to antibiotics is actually greater than that of developing infection. In addition, researchers fear that continuing to prescribe antibiotics without sufficient reason is leading to more drug-resistant bacteria.

So, are there any cases when antibiotics are recommended as a preventative measure?

The Exceptions

If your pre-existing medical condition puts you at a high risk of infection, your Carmichael dentist may prescribe an antibiotic regimen.

Such conditions may include:

  • heart transplant
  • history of infective endocarditis
  • congenital heart problem
  • artificial joint(s)
  • chronic inflammatory disease (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis)
  • weakened immune system
  • HIV
  • cancer
  • type 1 diabetes or hemophilia
  • prosthetic joint with a history of infection

This isn’t an exhaustive list. In addition, the type of procedure you are scheduled to undergo may dictate the use of antibiotics in the opinion of your oral surgeon or dentist.

If you are in need of a dental procedure, your Carmichael dentist will carefully review your personal history and circumstances, before making a recommendation that is best for you. Any questions? Feel free to contact us at the Marconi Dental Group today.