Antibiotics are medications that doctors prescribe to treat bacterial infections, such as ear infections, urinary tract infections, sinus infections, and bronchitis.
Although effective, antibiotics are not without side effects. They sometimes cause digestive problems such as nausea, bloating and diarrhea.
In addition, some antibiotics, such as tetracycline, have been linked to dental problems, such as toothpaste.
Due to the risk of permanent staining, this medicine is no longer prescribed for certain groups of people.
Here’s what you need to know about tetracycline, including how it affects your teeth.
Tetracycline is an antibiotic that has been available for over 6 decades. Like other antibiotics, it is commonly used to treat bacterial infections, such as acne and diarrhea.
In the 1950s, doctors prescribed this antibiotic to everyone, including children of all ages, for a variety of infections.
However, today doctors mainly prescribe it to children over the age of 8, as it has been found to cause discoloration of teeth in young children.
Discoloration has occurred in children who have been exposed to antibiotics during pregnancy or breastfeeding, as well as in the early years of tooth development.
This caused permanent spots on the teeth below the gum line or before the teeth came out.
The first case of teeth whitening in a child occurred in 1956, but some doctors continued to prescribe antibiotics to children until the 1980s.
The drug caused either a gray, brown or yellow discoloration that was embedded in tooth enamel.
Because babies who have had tetracycline in the womb or nursing home also have stained teeth, the antibiotic is no longer prescribed during pregnancy, particularly during the second or third trimester of pregnancy or during nursing.
Tetracycline is not the only antibiotic that affects teeth. Other antibiotic derivatives, such as doxycycline և minocycline, can have similar side effects on teeth.
Or the antibiotic affects the teeth below the gum line, but what exactly causes discoloration?
To put it simply, tooth discoloration occurs when tetracycline binds to the calcium needed for tooth development. This happens during the mineralization և calcification process, which leads to the inner spots of the tooth, that is, the spots develop below the tooth surface.
This is in contrast to food or drink tooth stains that appear on the tooth surface.
Under the influence of tetracycline, the baby’s newly erupted teeth appear fluorescent yellow. However, exposure to light causes discoloration, and the teeth turn brown or gray over time.
Because light affects the final color of the tooth, it is not uncommon for the front or front teeth to discolor more. The molars (at the mouth) may also discolor, but this is usually not so significant.
Not all children have the same degree of tooth discoloration. The degree of painting depends.
- duration of treatment
- The stage of tooth development at the time of impact
A child who is exposed to antibiotics for a longer period of time և in higher doses may have a higher rate of tooth staining.
Some children have light discoloration, perhaps light yellow or light gray teeth. But others may have darker yellow teeth or teeth that are dark blue or dark gray.
Tetracycline does not only affect tooth color. The effects of antibiotics can weaken tooth enamel, putting teeth at risk of decay (cavities).
The tooth cavity or cavity is permanent և requires dental filling. To protect tooth enamel.
- Limit sour drinks.
- Rinse with water after eating acidic foods.
- Use toothpaste և fluoride mouthwash to transform your teeth.
Because tetracycline causes internal staining, ie the stain is part of tooth enamel, teeth whitening may not eliminate this type of discoloration.
Whitening treatments are available, but they are not always effective; treatments can take longer. For example, a person who uses a night bleach tray for normal discoloration can achieve the desired results in 6 weeks.
But if you have tetracycline painted teeth, it may take up to 12 months for the teeth to brighten. And even after a year, they may still not be white.
If whitening treatment does not work, talk to your dentist about tartar. This involves placing a thin layer of toothpaste on the front surface of your teeth.
Veneers are designed to look like natural teeth և can cover tooth imperfections և discoloration.
Antibiotics can help your body fight infections, but some antibiotics have side effects, such as dental problems.
Although tetracycline is no longer prescribed for pregnancy or breastfeeding երեխաների in children younger than a certain age, you can whiten your teeth from the effects of the past.
Depending on the degree of discoloration, whitening treatments may work. If not, ask your dentist about toothpaste as a solution for stained teeth.