Can A Medication Cause Damage To Your Teeth?

When it comes to medications and prescription drugs, many people do not think about how they are putting their teeth at risk of being damaged. Here are some things you should know about how medications can impact your overall oral health. 

Medications May Cause Cavities

There are many types of medications that are syrup-based, and the kids' versions of them tend to taste pretty decent so that they are enjoyable for kids to take. However, these medications have sugar in them to help them taste good. Taking a syrup medication right after you brush your teeth in the evening could be introducing sugars that end up causing cavities. Always rinse out your mouth after taking one of these medications to help prevent cavities from forming. 

Medications May Cause Dry Mouth

Some medications have a known side effect of causing dry mouth, which is going to reduce the saliva production in your mouth. Since saliva helps wash over your teeth and remove the sugars that are on them, this means that any medication that causes dry mouth could be causing problems. Try drinking more water to wash the foods you eat off your teeth in order to keep your mouth healthy. 

Medications May Cause Gum Swelling

Another side effect that can impact your oral health is gum swelling. As your gums grow and extend from taking the medication, it can cause cosmetic concerns and make it more likely for food and plaque to get caught around your gums. If your gums expand, it is going to make the pockets around the teeth bigger and more likely to cause a problem.

Medications May Cause Discolorations

Be aware that a side effect of some medications is that they can cause your teeth to become discolored. The staining can actually happen on the inside of your teeth, and there is not a lot you can do to prevent it. Discoloration is often a side effect that happens much later after you've taken medication. In children, it can cause the adult teeth that are growing in to become discolored as well. Your dentist may recommend a crown, dental veneers, or whitening to try and restore the tooth back to its natural color. 

Have questions about a medication you are taking and your overall oral health? Make sure to ask your dentist during your next check-up since they'll be able to answer your questions based on what they have learned and observed over the years.