Shoreline, Edmonds, and Seattle, WA
Many dentists are aware how blood thinners can affect a patient’s level of bleeding when undergoing dental procedures. However, the only way for the dentist to know if a patient takes these type of coagulant medications is to include this information on your health history, but there is more. Patients often take over-the-counter herbs and supplements, yet fail to mention these to the dentist before a procedure.
According to Allstar Dental Academy research, there are estimates that nearly $28 billion was spent on supplements and herbs last year alone, and there are about 29,000 different types available. Although patients often understand the importance of listing their prescription medications on their health chart, they tend to think that herbal supplements are not worth mentioning.
It is important to notify the dentist, before a procedure, if you take anything at all, even a multivitamin or herbal supplement. Here are common herbal supplements that could interfere with your dental procedure. If you take any of these or others that are not listed below, let your dentist know.
- Ginseng – A popular herbal supplement that aids in stress reduction, and acts as an antioxidant. Also, helps increase physical and cognitive performance. The downside: It is an anticoagulant, which means if you bleed during your dental procedure your blood will not clot. It can also interfere with medications that treat blood glucose or blood pressure.
- Ginkgo biloba – Helps improve blood circulation, mental awareness, and memory. The downside: Its anticoagulation properties are significant.
- Ginger – Used to improve digestion, and is often used to help reduce nausea and motion sickness. The downside: Interferes with the blood’s ability to clot properly, and with some cardiac medications.
- Garlic – Helps improve the performance of the cardiovascular system, and to lower cholesterol. The downside: Interferes with the anticoagulation properties of medications such as Coumadin, NSAIDS, and such.
- Vitamin E – This fat-soluble vitamin offers antioxidant properties, aids in cardiovascular performance, and helps fight aging by reducing the body’s amount of free radicals. The downside: Its anticoagulation properties cause an increase in bleeding.
As you can see, many of these herbal supplements can significantly impact a patient’s ability to clot after a surgical procedure. Even something as simple as a dental cleaning that may cause tender gums to bleed could be an issue for some patients. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance that you share your complete medical history, as well as listing all medications (prescription or over-the-counter) on your health chart at the dentist.
If you have any questions about medications and dental procedures, or to schedule an appointment, call the office of Hoag and Dotsch at (206) 542-4344.
At Hoag and Dotsch, we are proud to provide oral health care to patients in the area of Shoreline, WA.