Blood Thinners & Dental Procedures

Many people currently take blood thinning medications to prevent blood clots, but this could be dangerous when dealing with dental procedures. Here’s what you need to know to ensure that you are protected.
 
What are Blood Thinners?
 
A blood thinning medication will prevent the development of a blood clot, pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis. There are several forms of blood thinners currently being used.
 
Antiplatelet Medications
 
These target the phasing of clot formation by preventing platelets from sticking to one another. Aspirin is a common form of this medication and produces permanent changes to the blood platelet that will last the entire lifetime of that platelet. This only reverses itself when new platelets are formed that have not been exposed to the medication.
 
Anticoagulant Medications
 
This inhibits the phase of clotting by blocking the production of proteins which stabilize a clot. It normally takes several days after beginning the medication for the full effects to take place. In addition, it will take several days once the medication stops to have the blood go back to normal.
 
Before Heading for a Dental Procedure
 
Bleeding during a dental procedure isn’t typically difficult to control. When a patient is taking a blood thinner, this can become dangerous. This is where the dentist needs to decide what the best course of action will be.
 
After a thorough evaluation, your dentist will decide on one of the following courses of action:
 
1. Do the procedure while you take the medication as normal.
2. Do the procedure after changing the dosage of medication.
3. Do the procedure after stopping the medication.
4. Waiting to do the procedure until another time.
 
Procedures that Could Conflict with Blood Thinners
 
Serious complications can occur with the following procedures while taking blood thinning medications.
 
Teeth cleaning
Deep teeth cleaning
Gum surgery
Tooth extractions
Biopsies
Dental implant procedures
 
If you are currently taking a blood thinning medication, be sure you speak with your dentist before they perform any procedure. It is always better to be safe than end up with serious health consequences. Your Bound Brook cosmetic dentist will know the right course of action for your particular needs.
 

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