National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month

AsthmaAllergy– A reaction to things like pollen, animals, food, medication, or topical agents. Symptoms of allergies include: watery eyes, stuffy nose, skin rash, hives or anaphylactic shock.

Asthma– A lung disease which makes breathing difficult. Symptoms include: coughing, wheezing, tightness in the chest and shortness of breath. Asthma can be hereditary and things like grass, pets, allergies and exercise induce symptoms.

Patients can have both an allergic and asthmatic reaction in dental offices. Allergic reactions can be caused by latex in the office, local anesthetics and by dental materials. Asthmatic reactions can be exacerbated by allergic reactions and/or by stress.

To Prevent an asthmatic or allergic reaction during treatment:

  • Recording a thorough medical history, which is the standard of care before commencing any dental treatment
  • Ask patients to report these conditions to each healthcare provider and physically carry their medications at all times.
  • The ADA states that all dental offices should have and maintain an emergency drug kit, equipment and the knowledge to properly use all items.
  • Emergency drugs, along with their actions and dosages, should be known by the dentist and his or her team.