Can You Be Allergic To Dental Cement?

You’ve just had a few dental procedures and you’re starting to feel a little weird in your mouth. It’s almost like you’re having an allergic reaction. Could you actually be allergic to the dental cement that dentists use?

The answer is yes. You can absolutely be allergic to dental cement. You can also be allergic to other substances used in the mouth such as eugenol, latex, and acrylics. The key is to know what’s been put in your mouth and what to look for if you think you’re having an allergic reaction to your dental work.

What Is Dental Cement?

Dental cement is the overall term for an array of substances used in dentistry and orthodontia to keep things like braces and veneers firmly in their place. A fair number of these numerous binders involve the use of substances like zinc or resin; resinous cements contain an adhesive. A fair number of dental procedures can use either base material or a few others, likely emerging as a result of needing to treat patients possessing specific allergies to certain dental substances.

The main reason that dental cement exists is because of the human mouth. The mouth is a very unique ecosystem; you cannot just use regular adhesives like super or even gorilla glue because they can either cause irritation around the mouth or the natural enzymes present in the mouth and around the teeth can quickly dissolve them, freeing whatever might have been glued into place.

What Does An Allergy To Dental Cement Feel Like?

There are several types of tell when it comes to an allergic reaction to something like dental cement. While the mildest reaction is nothing more than a rash, other potential symptoms and issues include the following.

  • Hives (urticaria)
  • Swelling of the tongue
  • Swelling of the lips
  • Swelling of the pharynx
  • Swelling of the larynx
  • Contraction of the bronchial tubes (bronchospasm)
  • Plummeting blood pressure (hypotensions)
  • Cardiac issues
  • Abdominal pain

What Kind Of Things In Dental Work Can You Be Allergic To?

Cement is not the only thing that carries the potential for an allergic reaction.

  • Acrylics. Acrylic comes up a lot when dealing with temporary veneers, as well as implants and crowns. If you suspect you have an acrylic allergy, consider asking if composite material is a viable alternative.
  • Epinephrine. This is commonly used as an anesthetic. It has also been known to up heart rate and anxiety in people with an allergy to it. A proper dentist will abstain from this substance if there is a noticeable increase in a patient’s heart rate or anxiety level.
  • Eugenol. This is a sedative that is often used with cements. If you notice any sort of damage of inflammation around your mouth’s tissues after having cement applied, you may be allergic to eugenol. You should let your dentist know about this if you suspect you have an allergic reaction.
  • Gluten. There are several polishing agents that involve gluten. If you happen to be gluten intolerant, please let your dentist know as soon as possible so he may resort to one or more gluten-free agents.
  • Latex. Latex is a common allergy that even pops up in dentistry. Many common materials in the dentistry trade, like polishers and gloves involve this rubbery tree extract. While there are latex-free dental supplies, you should let your dentist know if you have a latex allergy as soon as you possibly can.
  • Metal. A large variety of what goes into crowns and fillings involves metal. If you have specific metal allergies, you should inform your dentist as soon as possible. Crowns and fillings are made of porcelain for patients with an allergy to metal.

Even if you have your doubts about having one or more allergies to these substances, you need to communicate any sort of troubling signs to your dentist. If you feel a tenderness, itching, redness or swilling, inform your dentist so he can look things over and verify a potential allergic reaction. Once an allergen is acknowledged, alternative measures can be pursued.

What Can You Do At Home To Treat An Allergic Reaction To Dental Cement?

If you’re someone experienced with allergic reactions, you’re likely to already have an antihistamine on hand to take at the first sign of an allergic reaction.

Antihistamine Information

NameGeneric NameAdult
Makes You
BenadrylDiphenhydramine25-50 mg
4-6 hours
AllegraFexofenadine60 mg
once or twice
(most people)
ClaritinLoratadine10 mg
once daily
(most people)
Many brandsClemastine1.34 mg

When To Contact Your Dentist About An Allergic Reaction

If you feel that your symptoms are worsening and becoming rapidly uncomfortable, call your dentist. Most will have an emergency line that you can reach even after their normal business hours.

If your allergic reaction symptoms interfere with breathing or your ability to swallow, you should head to the emergency room or an urgent care facility immediately.

In Conclusion

Always know your options and your health; the more you know about how you react to certain substances, the more swimmingly your dental visits can go. Talk with your dentist if you notice or are aware of the litany of symptoms that can arise from an allergy to dental cement or any other substance common to the industry. The more information that your dentist has about your mouth, the better a job he can do in keeping it in the best of conditions.

Remember that the dentist is not your enemy; communication and freely sharing information is vital to keeping your smile gleaming and your mouth healthy. Only the most stubborn of patients would fail to mention that the recent bouts of swelling around his back teeth is a direct result of the cement used on his freshly-installed implants.

This lesson is of extra importance when it comes to the field of orthopedic dentistry and parents should always teach their kids to let the dentist know if something feels off in their mouth, no matter how inconsequential they may think that problem might be.

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