Antibiotics for dental procedures up infection risk

Antibiotics for dental procedures up infection risk

If your are planning to visit a dentist, think twice. According to a study, antibiotics prescribed by dentists may contribute to the growing problem of Clostridium difficile (C. diff) -- a serious and potentially deadly infection that causes severe diarrhoea.

Read also: Precautions to avoid dental issues

According to study:

  • Dentists write more than 24.5 million prescriptions for antibiotics a year.
  • And many of those antibiotics are likely unnecessary, the researchers said.
  • In addition,Antibiotics kill bad and good bacteria in the gastrointestinal (GI) system.
  • Furthermore,wiping out the protective bacteria can allow the growth of C. diff bacteria.
  • One of the top three most urgent antibiotic-resistant threats identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • "Dentists have been overlooked as a source of antibiotic prescribing, which can potentially delay treatment when doctors are trying to determine what is causing a patient's illness".

Experiment:

  • In the study the team interviewed 1,626 people with community-associated C. diff between 2009 and 2015.
  • Of those, 926 (57 per cent) reported they had been prescribed antibiotics, 136 (15 per cent) of those for dental procedures.
  • In addition,the study found patients who were prescribed antibiotics for dental procedures tended to be older.
  • And more likely to receive clindamycin -- an antibiotic that is associated with C. diff infection.Of those who had received antibiotics for a dental procedure, 34 per cent had no mention of antibiotics in their medical charts, illustrating the disconnect between dental and medical care.

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