Cocaine and Crack: Effects on the Body What Are the Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Use? Cocaine is a powerfully addictive drug. Thus, it is unlikely that an.
Summary Many drugs, both prescription and illegal, can cause tooth damage. Estimates suggest that about 40 per cent of people take at least one type of medicine that could damage their teeth. Excessive fluoride can damage children's teeth. Antihistamines, aspirin, asthma medications and syrups may cause tooth damage. Illegal drugs including cocaine, crack, ecstasy, heroin and methamphetamines can damage teeth. Many drugs, both prescription and illegal, can cause tooth damage. Estimates suggest that about 40 per cent of people take at least one type of medicine that could cause tooth damage. Healthy teeth and gums depend on good oral hygiene, a low-sugar diet, healthy saliva and regular visits to the dentist. It is important that you tell your dentist about any drugs or medications you are taking, including illegal drugs. Prevention is certainly better than cure, since dental restoration treatments can be expensive and time-consuming. Your child’s developing teeth A child’s permanent teeth start to form in the jawbones soon after birth. These developing teeth are vulnerable to certain substances including: Tetracycline – this antibiotic can give permanent teeth a yellowish or brownish colour. Fluoride – this strengthens teeth and is commonly added to water supplies and toothpaste. However, excessive amounts of fluoride can cause white or discoloured spots to form on developing permanent teeth. This is called fluorosis. Young children who routinely swallow fluoridated toothpaste are at increased risk. Talk to your dentist for further information on medicines that can affect the development of your child’s permanent teeth. Saliva protects your teeth Many drugs, both legal and illegal, reduce the flow of saliva and cause a condition called ‘dry mouth’. Dry mouth significantly increases the risk of tooth decay. This is because saliva: reduces the population of bacteria in the mouth reduces decay-causing mouth acids contains substances crucial to the ongoing process of re-mineralisation, which is the repair of tooth enamel (the hard surface layer that protects the tooth) that has been damaged by acids. Effect of medications on teeth and gums Some medications, including prescription drugs and over-the-counter preparations, can damage your teeth. Medications can cause gum problems such as inflammation, bleeding or ulceration. Diseased gums can lead to other dental problems including tooth loss. Some of these medications include: Antihistamines – can cause dry mouth, and an increased risk of gum problems. Antihypertensives – can lead to an increased risk of gum problems. Aspirin – chewing aspirin can directly damage the tooth enamel, as aspirin is acidic. Always take aspirin strictly as directed. The tablets should be swallowed whole with water, not placed beside a tooth. Asthma medications – some asthma drugs are highly acidic and can dissolve tooth enamel if used regularly over a long period of time. Chemotherapy drugs – can cause a dry mouth and lead to an increased risk of gum problems. Immunosuppressive drugs – can lead to an increased risk of gum problems. Oral contraceptives – can lead to an increased risk of gum problems. Syrups – medicated syrups that contain sugar can increase the risk of tooth decay if teeth are not brushed after these syrups are taken. Some medications can cause the gum tissue to thicken and grow over the teeth. This condition is called ‘gingival hyperplasia’. Medications linked to an increased risk of gingival hyperplasia include epilepsy medications, cyclosporin (organ transplant rejection drug), some blood pressure medications and calcium channel blockers. Talk to your doctor, pharmacist or dentist about whether the medications you are taking could harm your teeth. Alcohol and smoking can affect teeth and gums Regular intake of alcohol can cause a dry mouth and tooth damage, as most alcohols are acidic. Smoking is associated with an increased rate of gum problems as well as an increased risk of cancers, including oral cancer. Illegal drugs can affect teeth and gums The regular use of illegal drugs can cause significant tooth damage. Drugs that carry a high risk to your oral health include: cannabis – also called marijuana, pot and weed. Can cause dry mouth and can lead to an increased risk of gum problems. The smoke can cause oral cancer cocaine – also called coke, blow or nose candy. Users sometimes rub cocaine over their gums, causing ulceration of gums and the underlying bone. Cocaine mixed with saliva creates an extremely acidic solution that erodes tooth enamel and exposes the underlying dentine to decay-causing bacteria. Cocaine and crack cocaine cause dry mouth, which further increases the risk of tooth decay. Cocaine can cause tooth wear by tooth grinding (bruxism) ecstasy – also called love drug, E and eckies. Side effects of the drug include tooth grinding, jaw clenching and dry mouth heroin – also called H or smack. People who use heroin tend to crave sweet foods, which can increase the risk of tooth decay if dental hygiene is neglected. Heroin can also cause dry mouth and tooth grinding methamphetamine – also called speed, ice or meth. This drug causes severe tooth decay in a very short time. Dental professionals have coined the term ‘meth mouth’ to describe the extensive damage typically caused by this drug. Methamphetamine is highly acidic and attacks tooth enamel. Other side effects include dry mouth, bruxism and jaw clenching. Any drug dependence or drug use that causes the person to neglect their personal hygiene, diet and dental care can significantly increase the risk of dental (and many other) problems. Treatment for tooth and gum problems Professional treatment depends on the particular medication or drug and its effects on your teeth and gums, but may include: If a medicine is causing your dental health problems, the dentist may suggest that you talk to your doctor about adjusting the dose or method of delivery. In some cases, it may be possible to switch to another type of medicine that does not risk your dental health. If the doctor advises that changing your medication is not possible, talk to your dentist about professional and at-home treatments that can help to protect your teeth. Fluoride strengthens teeth and reduces the risk of decay. The dentist may apply topical fluoride preparations to the surface of your teeth. Fluoride tablets or mouthwashes may be recommended for use at home. Decayed teeth will need dental fillings and perhaps restorative work such as crowns. Badly decayed teeth may need to be removed (extracted). Partial dentures, bridges, dental implants or full dentures may be recommended. The dentist can carefully trim gum tissue affected by gingival hyperplasia. The dentist can recommend various treatments (such as veneers) that can improve the look of your mouth and smile. Things to remember Many drugs – prescription, herbal and illegal – can cause tooth damage. Estimates suggest that about 40 per cent of people take at least one type of medicine that could cause tooth damage. People who use illegal drugs should consider talking to their doctor about entering a drug treatment program. Want to know more? Go to More information for support groups, related links and references. This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by: (Logo links to further information) Australian Dental Association Victorian Branch Inc. Fact sheet currently being reviewed. Last reviewed: June 2014 Content on this website is provided for education and information purposes only. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your doctor or other registered health professional. Content has been prepared for Victorian residents and wider Australian audiences, and was accurate at the time of publication. Readers should note that, over time, currency and completeness of the information may change. All users are urged to always seek advice from a registered health care professional for diagnosis and answers to their medical questions. If you would like to link to this fact sheet on your website, simply copy the code below and add it to your page: <a href="http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Teeth_and_drug_use?open">Teeth and drug use - Better Health Channel</a><br/> Many drugs, both prescription and illegal, can cause tooth damage. Estimates suggest that about 40 per cent of people take at least one type of medicine that could damage their teeth. Excessive fluoride can damage children's teeth. Antihistamines, aspirin, asthma medications and syrups may cause tooth damage. Illegal drugs including cocaine, crack, ecstasy, heroin and methamphetamines can damage teeth. Content on this website is provided for education and information purposes only. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your qualified health professional. Content has been prepared for Victorian residence and wider Australian audiences, and was accurate at the time of publication. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users are urged to always seek advice from a qualified health care professional for diagnosis and answers to their medical questions. For the latest updates and more information, visit www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au Copyight © 1999/2015 State of Victoria. 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Drug Slang This list was originally compiled in the 1990s, with some recent updates. But street drug slang rapidly dates. A Bean - MDMA; Abe - $5 worth.
Is tooth pain trying to tell you that you have cracked teeth? Being able to determine the symptoms of cracked tooth syndrome may save your smile.