Last week, my dentist removed my lower right second molar. The tooth was infected, and my gums were swollen before the extraction. Before the extraction, I picked up a prescription for amoxicillin that my dentist prescribed. I am taking the medication as prescribed, but the swelling is worse. My dentist also prescribed pain meds, but they do not work. My jaw is swollen and stiff. Should I keep taking this antibiotic, or does it sound like my dentist might need to switch me to another one? Thank you. Ariana
Your description sounds like the antibiotics are not helping your infection, and it is getting worse. Sometimes, infection will not respond to an antibiotic because the bacteria strain is resistant to the medication. Yes, you should call your dentist, and they will switch you to another antibiotic.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) each year in the U.S., almost three million people get infected with an antibiotic-resistant fungus or bacteria. Do not worry. Your body is not becoming resistant to antibiotics. It is the fungi or bacteria that is resistant. Still, antibiotic-resistant infections keep growing without proper treatment.
After your dentist switches you to a new medication, continue to take all of it even if the swelling improves. Stopping an antibiotic too soon can cause the infection to return and develop resistance to the medication. Then, your dentist would need to find a third antibiotic for you.
Please call your dentist’s office right away to get a new medication that will control the infection.
Siny Thomas, DDS, a Sugar Land, Texas cosmetic dentist, sponsors this post.