Antibiotics for toothache


Using antibiotic for toothache has been an issue for a very long time. Recently published survey results show overprescribing antibiotics by GP for dental problems as many patients head on to GP surgery for help. Research clearly shows that over half of the patients who visited GP in last 10 years for dental problem instead of undergoing dental treatment chosen to use antibiotic often unnecessarily.  Fact is that most of dental problems cannot be comprehensively addressed by GP and they do not have instruments, knowledge, practice and experience to do so.

Whatever reasons are behind that the bottom line is they will not help so you are very likely going to end up in bigger trouble that you already are.

So if you have a toothache or you think you will get one soon don’t go to GP for help as gaining antibiotic from GP is not going to really solve the problem.

Most of people do not realise that using antibiotic is not really gonna work. Yes, It will help if you have bacterial infection or abscess and yes it will help in fungal infection however this one is rarely painful and in most cases we are not aware of infection till dentist will advise us.

However antibiotic it is not a painkiller and cannot replace one. So trust your dentist when they say that you do not need antibiotic routinely after root canal treatment, extraction, filling, hygiene appointment on implant placement. You also do not need antibiotics for bleeding gums.  There may be situation where he or she will decide to issue one but there is a very clear  clinical guidance on when, how and in what dosage it has to be used.

Please don’t be disappointed or even angry if your dentist will not give you antibiotics for toothache or broken tooth or for ” just in case” as believe me it is in your own best interest.

What you may not realise  is the fact that the more antibiotic you take the less effective it becomes as you gradually may develop resistance to it not to mention all the tommy problems and indigestion it may cause or even interaction with your other medication.  So you are not doing yourself really any favours but rob yourself in the future from the opportunity of effective low dosage treatment in situation when you actually will need antibiotics and not just for dental reasons but for all other type of infections.

As a proof that antibiotic resistance really is blooming and taking tall on all of us as a result of  overprescribing of antibiotics  let me tell you that only few months ago the new updated guidance on using antibiotics in dental cases increased minimal effective required dose of antibiotic by 100% !

So next time think twice before you start requesting one for no reason ….