Allergic Reactions In The Dental Office
If you experience swollen, itchy eyes, sneezing and a runny nose when visiting the dentist, you might be suffering from an allergic reaction. No you’re not allergic to your dentist, you can’t get out of going to the dentist that easy. However, you might very well be allergic to something in the dental office.
Who Experiences Allergic Reactions?
Quite often people with a family history of allergies will suffer from allergic reactions. Not everyone is allergic to the same substance. If you have allergies, it’s a good idea to discuss these with your dentist prior to any dental work.
What Causes Allergic Reactions?
There are different substances that can cause an allergic reaction. Below we will discuss the top three substances that people are allergic to in the dental office.
- Dental amalgam components. Dental amalgam is used to fill cavities. There are metals in the amalgam such as, silver, copper or tin and these can trigger oral lesions or other contact reactions.
- Latex. A surprising amount of people have an allergy to latex. There are several supplies and devices in the dental office that contains latex, such as, gloves, masks and syringes. If you have an allergy to latex be sure to mention it to your dentist. Most dental offices have latex free supplies on hand.
- Local anesthetic. Local anesthetics numb your mouth and gums during dental treatment. Allergies to local anesthetics are rare, but they can occur.
Symptoms Of An Allergic Reaction
In addition to the symptoms mentioned at the beginning of the article you could also develop hives, skin rash and asthma. The most severe allergic reaction is the potentially fatal condition known as anaphylactic shock. Anaphylactic shock is generally characterized by generalized flushing of the skin, hives, mouth and throat swelling, difficulty in swallowing or speaking, changes in heart rate, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, anxiety, a sudden feeling of weakness and unconsciousness.
What To Do If You Have An Allergic Reaction
If you have an allergic reaction, talk to your dentist immediately. Make sure the information is put in your chart as an alert. If you experience a severe reaction, you may decide to carry an EpiPen with you and consider wearing a medical alert bracelet that states your allergy.