What are antibiotics?

Antibiotics are medicines for treating bacterial infections that have made many modern medical and dental procedures possible. But when antibiotics are used incorrectly or too frequently, bacteria can develop resistance to these drugs, making them less effective.

Do you need antibiotics when going to the dentist?

It is important to only use antibiotics when they are needed. While antibiotics are warranted for some dental procedures, many toothaches and oral infections do not require antibiotics. However, based on your procedure and medical history, your dentist may recommend an antibiotic. Always let your dentist know about any medical conditions or changes to your health.

What can you do?

The best way to ensure you don’t need antibiotics for oral infections is to prevent them in the first place. Establishing a daily mouth care routine, eating well and visiting your dentist regularly are all important steps in preventing dental disease.

To learn more: click on the resources below, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and ask your dentist about using antibiotics wisely.

Antibiotic Resistance Video

Sometimes you need antibiotics, but what if you don't? When you use antibiotics too often or incorrectly, bacteria can develop resistance.

Preventing Infection Video

Antibiotics fight and prevent infection. They revolutionized modern dentistry. But there are other effective ways to prevent infection.

Antibiotics and Dental Care Fact Sheet

Learn more about the use of antibiotics in dental practice, and why they may not be needed for every condition.

Say Naah Poster

A poster suitable for dental offices, community centres and other public locations. Open up and think twice about antibiotics.

Say Naah Image

Share this image on social media with your reason for thinking twice about antibiotics.

Say Naah Banner

A banner image which you can add to your social media profile. Open up and say "naaah."

Say Naah Animated GIF

An animated GIF. Share on social media with your reason for thinking twice about antibiotics.

Your Dental Health Website

Your Dental Health is a public education program of the BC Dental Association (BCDA) providing general dental information.

Penicillin Allergy Fact Sheet

Did you know that half of all penicillin allergies go away within 5 years? Learn more about why penicillin may still be the right choice even if you have been told you have an allergy.


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