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Antibiotics are not Always the Answer

A few weeks ago, we had a patient come into our office with a concern for some irritations inside his mouth, and he was eager to receive a prescription for an antibiotic. Inside his mouth were several small sores on his gums, which are common sign of a virus infection. Given a few days, they typically heal on their own, but require some follow-up.

As the patient had been in some discomfort for a few days already, he was rather disappointed when told an antibiotic would not benefit him.

With the marketing that certain antibiotics like Penicillin, Augmentin, and the Z-Pak receive, it is easy for us all to mistakenly believe that antibiotics are the cure for everything; however, antibiotics are only effective for bacterial infections, certain fungal infections, and some kinds of parasites. They do not work against viruses.

Antibiotic resistance occurs when an antibiotic no longer works against a disease-causing bacteria. Overuse can result in drug resistances like MRSA that can become life-threatening. Using antibiotics wisely is the best way to ensure that they are effective for future illnesses.

It is our practice to carefully evaluate our patients’ concerns and only write a prescription for an antibiotic when indicated.

If you have questions about this article, or if you are looking for a dentist in Winter Park, Florida, please call us at (407)644-2700 or visit our website.

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