Medicine and LozengesThe medicine you take for one physical disorder may literally rot your teeth. This fact is one of many reasons we need to know your medical history and current treatments.

This Medicine, For Instance…

Chewable vitamin C supplements are a good idea for a lot of people, but check your brand for sugar content. For children, especially, a liquid form does less damage to tooth enamel, and natural sources of the vitamin—oranges, green vegetables—are even better.

Calcium channel blockers (Procardia, Cardizem, Adalat) cause swelling of the gums in at least 20% of patients with high blood pressure or heart disease. This situation can be hazardous, as bacteria invade gums and may reach the heart itself.

Over-the-counter preparations of all sorts—lozenges, cough drops, antacids—are sugar-laden. Tums has calcium, yes, and enough sugar for a family of four.

It is essential to list all the medicine you may be taking and to provide an update at each appointment. Because, as you see, these medications (as well as many others) can have numerous side effects for our oral health.