Why is it necessary to disclose my medical history for dental treatment?

You may ask why there are so many questions on the medical history form at the dentist and why the dental staff at your office insist on asking “any changes to your medical history” at each visit.

Why is it so important?

The short answer is, that the body is all connected. Medications, diseases, syndromes and surgeries all play a role in your dental health.

Medications can cause soft-tissue reactions, enlarged gums, dry mouth, alter taste, abnormal bleeding, affect blood clotting and have adverse effects with local anaesthetic and other medications. Your dentist and dental hygienist must be aware of all side effects to plan appropriately.

Your mouth harbours bacteria that enter the bloodstream and can cause harm to your body in certain scenarios. If an artificial heart valve was placed these bacteria can target that valve causing it to fail. Antibiotics prior to dental treatment are sometimes needed.

Medical conditions such as diabetes can intensify gum disease. Studies have shown that uncontrolled diabetes puts a person at greater risk for developing gum, bone and oral infections. A thyroid condition can slow the bodies healing, and therefore can turn a simple extraction to difficult. Also, medications for osteoporosis, such as Prolia can have a similar effect when having a dental extraction. Dental professionals need to be aware of all conditions to determine the correct treatment plan for you.

A patient’s medical history plays a vital role in dental treatment and medical emergencies. It provides dental professionals with the necessary information to provide safe and individualized care.

Let your office know if you have any new allergies, are taking any new medications, have had recent surgeries, or if you have any other medical conditions. If you have any questions, give us a call.

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