Dental Treatment During Chemotherapy: Keeping Your Mouth Healthy

Cancer treatment can have a serious effect on your oral health. Different types of chemotherapy can affect your mucous membranes and put you at high risk of infection. If you have a tooth problem during your treatment, then you may have to put off dental work until your treatment is finished. However, there are ways to keep your mouth in good shape during that time.

See your dentist before treatment:

One of the best ways to make sure your mouth stays healthy is to see your dentist before the treatment starts. Most dentists recommend seeing them anywhere from two weeks to a month before treatment. However, your dentist may have a different schedule based on your dental history. Your dentist will check over your mouth for any potential problems such as existing sores and cuts. Be sure to repair any broken fillings or crowns at the time of your visit.

Practice exceptional oral hygiene:

Since you won't really be able to visit your dentist as often as usual, it's extremely important to take care of your mouth. Brush at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss daily. Use the softest toothbrush possible both on your teeth and tongue. Your dentist may have suggestions on how to soften your existing toothbrush. Stay away from extremely hot or frozen foods as well as sharp foods to lessen the chance of cutting or burning your mouth. Because your mouth is more likely to have cuts and sores from chemotherapy, avoid mouth washes with alcohol in them.

Talk to your oncologist about dental emergencies:

While you may be able to put off simple repairs, such as repairing cracked fillings or routine teeth cleaning until your treatment is done, dental emergencies are another matter. You don't want broken or cracked teeth, abscesses and other infections to remain untreated while you're receiving chemotherapy due to increased infection risks. Talk to both your oncologist and your dentist about the best course of action for you for these issues. You will need to have tests to make sure you can withstand the treatments and to determine if you will need additional antibiotics and medications. Having dental treatment at this time could put you in the hospital if you are not careful.

Taking care of your teeth while you're being treated for cancer can be a challenge. If you see your dentist before treatment and take care of your mouth, you should come away with your oral health in good shape. Your dentist and oncologist can work together to solve any special problems with your teeth. If you're getting ready for chemotherapy, be sure to see your dentist as soon as possible to make sure everything is in order and healthy. Talk to a company like Belgrade Dental Associates for more information.