Local Antibiotic Therapy Home Care Instructions

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You are receiving local antibiotic therapy because we are concerned about certain sites of serious chronic infection in your gums and bone around your teeth. It is important to treat these sites more aggressively so that the infectious bacteria found there does not spread to other areas in your mouth. The most recent scientific evidence also has shown that gum disease can affect other sites in your body and increase your risk of many ailments such as heart disease, pulmonary infection, gastric ulcer recurrence, difficult blood glucose control in diabetics, and adverse pregnancy outcomes in expecting mothers. For these reasons, an aggressive treatment approach to gum disease is taken. A great resource for information on this connection is the American Academy of Periodontology’s website, www.perio.org.

We have placed in your most infected areas the medication, Arestin®. It is a controlled release local antibiotic that is administered right at the sight of infection. The antibiotic in Arestin®, minocycline, is slowly released over time and kills the bacteria that cause gum disease. For it to function best, there are a few home care instructions that are important to follow.

  • Wait at least 10 days before using floss, toothpicks, interproximal brushes, or other cleaning devices below the gums in the area the medication was placed. However, be sure to continue to brush the tooth above the gum level.
  • Avoid chewing on hard, crunchy, or sticky foods in the treated area for one week.
  • Please call us immediately if you experience pain, swelling, rash, redness, difficulty breathing or other signs of infection or allergic reaction.

We ask that you return for a follow-up appointment in about 6 weeks so that we can evaluate the disease’s response to the treatment. If an adequate response is not seen, we may discuss further treatment options with you at that time.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us: 360.221.6373

Saratoga Dental