Often, people are so accustomed to taking medications that they don’t realize how they are affecting them.

One example is how medications affect your mouth, specifically your teeth and gums. Individuals who are experiencing side effects may attribute them to “life” or other source, when in reality many types of over-the-counter and prescription medications can affect your teeth and gums in numerous ways.

1. They can cause dry mouth, which can lead to various dental problems including tooth decay and bad breath. Hundreds of different types of medications can cause dry mouth, but antidepressants, decongestants, antihistamines, and diuretics are among the most common culprits.

If you are experiencing dry mouth, make an appointment to see one of our dental health professionals here at the Shelby Macomb Medical Mall in Shelby Township. Remedies can be simple, painless, and affordable, and the solution often is as simple as using a specific type of mouthwash.

Some home remedies for dry mouth include sucking on sugar-free candy, chewing sugar-free gum, drinking water, and eating celery or carrots.

2. Medications can leave a metallic taste in your mouth, which is very common when using some types of vitamins and cold or flu medications. Normally, this uncomfortable side effect will subside once you’ve nursed yourself back to health. If it doesn’t, make an appointment to see one of our primary care professionals here in Shelby Township in order to determine the source of the problem. You may also consider contacting a dentist or hygienist here, as the metallic taste may be a sign of gum disease or tooth infection.

3. Although medications are effective in making you feel better or maintaining your good health, if the oral side effects are not addressed, you may eventually face tooth decay. This is especially true if your medications are especially acidic or sugary.

To avoid these complications, rinse your mouth after taking a dose of medication if it’s advisable. Rinsing is not ideal after the use of some medications, such as oral rinses. Another option is to request medications in pill form as opposed to liquid.

If you are experiencing discomfort, don’t ignore it. Medications affect your mouth as well as various other areas of your body and hair. If the problem is not addressed, it could possibly turn into a bigger issue. Contact a health care professional to identify the source and the most appropriate remedy in your case.