We live in a day and age where, in an attempt to fend off (or minimize the severity of) illness, we can take a pill as soon as we feel its onset. Modern medicine may be wonderful, but this easy access to antibiotics has created a problem for the medical and dental fields alike.
Over time, people build a resistance to antibiotics, typically from taking them too often. Today, hospitals are becoming more challenged with patients who are failing to respond to ‘traditional’ antibiotics (penicillin, amoxicillin, etc.). As a Mother, I’m cautious about any medications I give to my sons, especially antibiotics. This is why I allow a low grade fever to do its job (combat infection) rather than rush to give them antibiotics.
As a Dentist, I am seeing a complication with resistance to antibiotics, especially with some patients in Periodontal Therapy. We are fortunate, in our office, to have a dental laser that helps to eliminate periodontal bacteria. This reduces the amount of antibiotics patients require after treatment. However, the ‘normal’ amount that is effective for some is insufficient for a growing number.
As your Dentist, I am just as concerned about your overall health and well-being as your smile. Before you ask your MD for a prescription for an antibiotic, ask if there are other ways you can help your body overcome infection on its own steam. Although there is a limit to avoiding medication that is needed to overcome sickness, over-indulging can have devastating results as well.