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Dentist
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Does anyone else get sick when they go to the Dentist?? I love my Dentist, but I get sick everytime I go in for a cleaning or a filling. I have to immediately get in bed after every visit. I asked my Dentist about it, and he didn't seem to know what Celiac Disease was, and he told me he was sure that there was not wheat in any of his products. What should I do? I don't want to be sick, but I feel really funny asking him if I could see the labels of all the products that he uses. Does anyone else have this problem?

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I did until I found a dentist that would check what they used with me. While most products are safe there are some that are not. I really, really liked the dentist I had seen most of my life but when I asked them to check products they gave me a list of what they used. I thought great but found that many makers wouldn't give me any info since I wasn't the office calling.

My new dentist does check and the products that seemed to have the most risk, according to them was the stuff with flavoring so they use plain pumice to polish my teeth and changed the numbing agent they put on my gums before the numbing injections.

It is a shame that so many dentists are clueless because in some countries they are the first to notice a problem as the enamel is often affected. Here I heard countless times I had to cut down on sodas, when we almost never drank it, and lately they seem to think enamel damage is all from acidic fruit and drinks. It's a shame since many children could get diagnosed earlier if they were more knowledgeable.

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I notice that I always get canker sores after a dentist visit....not sure about the other symptoms, as I'm newly diagnosed and wasn't watching for any correlation. I sure will next time. Thank you for bringing up this topic!

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I'm my dentist's second celiac patient, and with his first, he looked into the disease and they called all their product manufacturers for their substances.

And yes, sometimes the flavoring can be gluten derived. I, too, use the plain pumice to polish.

If, however, he checks it all, it's all gluten-free, and there's still a problem? Another potential issue can be the sterilization and cleaning of the instruments. It depends on how good the office is, and also on their sterilization process. Dental instruments are usually scrubbed down and then sterilized to destroy disease causing organisms, but as we know, gluten is not a disease causing organism. So there are approved methods for sterilization that won't destroy the gluten, even though they work fine on sanitizing.

If that office happened to have a sloppy scrubber of instruments, and their autoclave wasn't a type that destroyed proteins...that could be a problem. You can get glutened from gluten on a previous patient's teeth (and isn't that a lovely thought?). There are UV light based autoclaves, for example, that are lethal to living organisms, but you can see where they'd have no effect on gluten at all. If your dentist has an autoclave that goes to 500 F or above, though, then that will destroy the gluten. This is the kind my dentist has.

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If that office happened to have a sloppy scrubber of instruments, and their autoclave wasn't a type that destroyed proteins...that could be a problem. You can get glutened from gluten on a previous patient's teeth (and isn't that a lovely thought?).

Oh My is that a gross thought or what? ewwwww

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I suggest you find a dentist who is concerned enough to KNOW if his products contain gluten.

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I notice that I always get canker sores after a dentist visit....not sure about the other symptoms, as I'm newly diagnosed and wasn't watching for any correlation. I sure will next time. Thank you for bringing up this topic!

That's strange because now that you mention it, I got two big sores on the inside of my lip last time I went. However, I thought it was from me biting my lip really hard and not knowing it because I was SO NUMB.

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Thank you for the posts. I've gotten sick the last two times. I'll ask for plain pumice next time and see if that makes the difference. I'll also ask about the autoclave.

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It's funny you bring this up. I always get a little bit of a stomach ache, but my little daughter always gets sick. Last time she had a filling she got a rash, which made me suspect there may have been corn in something. Are there dentists willing to check? I'll have to look into that.

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I'm my dentist's second celiac patient, and with his first, he looked into the disease and they called all their product manufacturers for their substances.

And yes, sometimes the flavoring can be gluten derived. I, too, use the plain pumice to polish.

If, however, he checks it all, it's all gluten-free, and there's still a problem? Another potential issue can be the sterilization and cleaning of the instruments. It depends on how good the office is, and also on their sterilization process. Dental instruments are usually scrubbed down and then sterilized to destroy disease causing organisms, but as we know, gluten is not a disease causing organism. So there are approved methods for sterilization that won't destroy the gluten, even though they work fine on sanitizing.

If that office happened to have a sloppy scrubber of instruments, and their autoclave wasn't a type that destroyed proteins...that could be a problem. You can get glutened from gluten on a previous patient's teeth (and isn't that a lovely thought?). There are UV light based autoclaves, for example, that are lethal to living organisms, but you can see where they'd have no effect on gluten at all. If your dentist has an autoclave that goes to 500 F or above, though, then that will destroy the gluten. This is the kind my dentist has.

This post really begs a response.....I have a pretty savvy dentist and have done reams of research on dental products only to find that I couldn't find any which contain gluten. I am at the dentist every 3 months for cleanings and am currently having 2 dental implants done and have never once gotten sick from a gluten hit. Most dental products use gluten-free gums like guar or xanthan as thickening agents in their products and Celiacs may have a reaction to gums but it isn't from gluten. The flavorings in polish or toothpaste...nope, all my research showed it's a non-issue. I am about as sensitive as a Celiac comes and to this date, 6 years gluten-free, have never gotten sick at the dentist except for a Celiac type reaction from a product containing guar gum.

I did hours of research on this and called dental company reps because of the amount of work I had to have done on my teeth and they were extremely helpful and aware that this is a huge potential problem for us. No gluten. I am not saying that people aren't having a reaction because I am sure they are but the odds of it being from gluten is so low it isn't on the radar.

The second idea that autoclaves may not be doing their job is just plain silly. Trust me, in the day of HIV and other communicable diseases, dentists do make sure their instruments are clean....very clean. There may be dirty dentists out there but I would venture to guess the number is so small, you would be able to guess by their office anyway when you went in and wouldn't go back. If autoclaves can destroy the HIV virus, then why would anyone think that gluten would be hanging out on the instruments, just waiting to get ya? Any scrubbing process would remove potential problems....I can do that easily enough in my kitchen sink with plain soap so why would anyone be worried about the dental office? Really...this isn't a worry.

If someone is getting sick at the dentist, then most likely the culprit is another intolerance. How do I know that? It happened to me. I found out the problem were the gums in some of their products...there was no gluten to be found. Gums really bother me and give me the same type of reaction as gluten does. It's always prudent and necessary to check ingredients but I did the research and found most dentists use like products....there isn't a huge selection out there. I spent a lot of time on this and couldn't find any product that was not gluten-free. If you do, post it because people need to know but I really don't think it's as big of an issue as many here believe. The vast majority of natural flavorings do not contain gluten.

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This post really begs a response.....I have a pretty savvy dentist and have done reams of research on dental products only to find that I couldn't find any which contain gluten. I am at the dentist every 3 months for cleanings and am currently having 2 dental implants done and have never once gotten sick from a gluten hit. Most dental products use gluten-free gums like guar or xanthan as thickening agents in their products and Celiacs may have a reaction to gums but it isn't from gluten. The flavorings in polish or toothpaste...nope, all my research showed it's a non-issue. I am about as sensitive as a Celiac comes and to this date, 6 years gluten-free, have never gotten sick at the dentist except for a Celiac type reaction from a product containing guar gum.

I did hours of research on this and called dental company reps because of the amount of work I had to have done on my teeth and they were extremely helpful and aware that this is a huge potential problem for us. No gluten. I am not saying that people aren't having a reaction because I am sure they are but the odds of it being from gluten is so low it isn't on the radar.

The second idea that autoclaves may not be doing their job is just plain silly. Trust me, in the day of HIV and other communicable diseases, dentists do make sure their instruments are clean....very clean. There may be dirty dentists out there but I would venture to guess the number is so small, you would be able to guess by their office anyway when you went in and wouldn't go back. If autoclaves can destroy the HIV virus, then why would anyone think that gluten would be hanging out on the instruments, just waiting to get ya? Any scrubbing process would remove potential problems....I can do that easily enough in my kitchen sink with plain soap so why would anyone be worried about the dental office? Really...this isn't a worry.

If someone is getting sick at the dentist, then most likely the culprit is another intolerance. How do I know that? It happened to me. I found out the problem were the gums in some of their products...there was no gluten to be found. Gums really bother me and give me the same type of reaction as gluten does. It's always prudent and necessary to check ingredients but I did the research and found most dentists use like products....there isn't a huge selection out there. I spent a lot of time on this and couldn't find any product that was not gluten-free. If you do, post it because people need to know but I really don't think it's as big of an issue as many here believe. The vast majority of natural flavorings do not contain gluten.

Glad you have had such great luck. I didn't with my old dentist. My gluten reactions are very specific and whether it was a reaction to flavors, CC of the powdered gloves (my new dentist uses unpowdered ones) or something else doesn't matter to me, it was definately gluten. I have had extensive work done with my new dentist, who took the time to check everything they use, and have no reactions with their office.

I agree with you completely about the autoclaves.

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Never had a problem. And I get my teeth cleaned three times yearly, plus occasional appointments for other things. Also, I've had two different dentists since I was diagnosed.

best regards, lm

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The second idea that autoclaves may not be doing their job is just plain silly. Trust me, in the day of HIV and other communicable diseases, dentists do make sure their instruments are clean....very clean.

I didn't say the autoclaves weren't doing their job - they are. But their job is to deal with, as you mentioned, things like viruses and other living pathogens. It's not to destroy non-living proteins. And there are numerous types of autoclaves - the UV light, gas, dry heat and steam heat - and some of these are simply not as effective at completely destroying proteins.

My dentist actually chose the autoclave system he did BECAUSE it could destroy proteins as well - he said as much when I was asking him about the system.

Sanitizing isn't the same thing as destroying allergens, so while some techniques, machines, or substances can deal with both living organisms AND proteins, quite a few will only eliminate the disease carrying organisms while the proteins remain intact.

And as for scrubbing taking care of the problem? Hopefully, yes. A good office with enough time and conscientious employees is going to be very diligent about scrubbing. However, many times the instruments are scrubbed in, again, a solution aimed at sanitizing rather than a soap and water solution. They are very often scrubbed in the free moments in between patients, unless the office is big enough to have someone who simply deal with that, so scrubbing is a rushed affair, more often than not. And many of the instruments, as they get older, get worn. They get resharpened periodically, but they develop nicks and scratches in between sharpenings, which are hard to scrub as we all know from our experiences with pots and pans.

I worked with a periodontist for a couple years, who was considered one of the best in our area, where I got to help scrub out the instruments myself and use multiple autoclaves during my time there, both gas and heat, and I can tell you first hand that there WERE a few times where I caught an instrument that still had something on it after coming out of the autoclave when we were setting up the trays for a patient. The hygienists weren't that surprised - it didn't seem uncommon, based on their reaction. Of course, we would put it back to be cleaned rather than use it, but if there was stuff that we could see, I'm sure there was stuff that we couldn't see that could be enough to gluten someone, in the wrong circumstances.

Now, do I think gluten on dental instruments is a huge risk? No. Dental offices work really hard at keeping clean, in my experience. But is it a possibility to be considered if one is getting a gluten reaction at the dentist multiple times? I really do think so.

Just as a related aside, I have a friend with anaphylactic allergies to certain foods and she only uses dentists who have over 500 F autoclaves for their protein destroying properties, too.

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I find stuck on particles of food after I run the dishwasher. It is certainly possible for it to happen after cleaning of dental equipment. Though I hope that it happens a lot less often! When the size of particle that will gluten a very sensitive celiac could be invisible to the human eye, it seem possible that it could happen in the dentist's office.

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This post really begs a response.....I have a pretty savvy dentist and have done reams of research on dental products only to find that I couldn't find any which contain gluten. I am at the dentist every 3 months for cleanings and am currently having 2 dental implants done and have never once gotten sick from a gluten hit. Most dental products use gluten-free gums like guar or xanthan as thickening agents in their products and Celiacs may have a reaction to gums but it isn't from gluten. The flavorings in polish or toothpaste...nope, all my research showed it's a non-issue. I am about as sensitive as a Celiac comes and to this date, 6 years gluten-free, have never gotten sick at the dentist except for a Celiac type reaction from a product containing guar gum.

I did hours of research on this and called dental company reps because of the amount of work I had to have done on my teeth and they were extremely helpful and aware that this is a huge potential problem for us. No gluten. I am not saying that people aren't having a reaction because I am sure they are but the odds of it being from gluten is so low it isn't on the radar.

The second idea that autoclaves may not be doing their job is just plain silly. Trust me, in the day of HIV and other communicable diseases, dentists do make sure their instruments are clean....very clean. There may be dirty dentists out there but I would venture to guess the number is so small, you would be able to guess by their office anyway when you went in and wouldn't go back. If autoclaves can destroy the HIV virus, then why would anyone think that gluten would be hanging out on the instruments, just waiting to get ya? Any scrubbing process would remove potential problems....I can do that easily enough in my kitchen sink with plain soap so why would anyone be worried about the dental office? Really...this isn't a worry.

If someone is getting sick at the dentist, then most likely the culprit is another intolerance. How do I know that? It happened to me. I found out the problem were the gums in some of their products...there was no gluten to be found. Gums really bother me and give me the same type of reaction as gluten does. It's always prudent and necessary to check ingredients but I did the research and found most dentists use like products....there isn't a huge selection out there. I spent a lot of time on this and couldn't find any product that was not gluten-free. If you do, post it because people need to know but I really don't think it's as big of an issue as many here believe. The vast majority of natural flavorings do not contain gluten.

It's wonderful that you've researched this so well. I have some extensive - and expensive - dental work coming up and I always dread the worry over gluten in his office. This has done a lot to reassure me.

Did your research also show dental floss to be gluten-free? A long time ago there was a discussion here about flavored and unflavored dental floss. It was surmised that Reach dental floss was safe in the unflavored varieties but not the mint or other flavors. I've stuck to the unflavored kind but still have about 4 packages of mint stuck away for my husband's use. Do you think they're safe?

Since then I've always taken my own floss to the dentist when I go in for cleanings but it would be nice not to have to worry about this.

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It's wonderful that you've researched this so well. I have some extensive - and expensive - dental work coming up and I always dread the worry over gluten in his office. This has done a lot to reassure me.

Did your research also show dental floss to be gluten-free? A long time ago there was a discussion here about flavored and unflavored dental floss. It was surmised that Reach dental floss was safe in the unflavored varieties but not the mint or other flavors. I've stuck to the unflavored kind but still have about 4 packages of mint stuck away for my husband's use. Do you think they're safe?

Since then I've always taken my own floss to the dentist when I go in for cleanings but it would be nice not to have to worry about this.

I do not use flavored dental floss because I like the unwaxed variety and that does not come flavored. I used to use the mint type when they did make an unwaxed, flavored mint type but that was pre-diagnosis so that won't help you at all. I would stick with the unflavored, unless you want to call the company and go through that exercise of trying to verify it's status. It can be a total pain....I spent weeks calling everyone but got the information I needed and learned a lot about dental products. I have had extensive dental work done and will, according my dentist, until I am no longer on the planet! :o

To add to this....I go every 3 months for full cleanings, have had multiple caps done, I am in the midst of having 2 dental implants done.....you get the picture. I am sending my dentists kids through college! In all this work, I had one severe reaction and that was from the impression compound. It was the damn gums, which I verified later by eating some gluten-free baked goods I made using gums (I normally do not use them in baking). I felt crappy afterwards so do not eat them anymore. My dentist knows how careful he has to be with Celiacs....I trained him well. ;) Go ahead and get your teeth fixed and, as long as you do the homework and make sure your dentist is on board with everything, you'll probably do fine. Teeth are important!

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Glad you have had such great luck. I didn't with my old dentist. My gluten reactions are very specific and whether it was a reaction to flavors, CC of the powdered gloves (my new dentist uses unpowdered ones) or something else doesn't matter to me, it was definately gluten. I have had extensive work done with my new dentist, who took the time to check everything they use, and have no reactions with their office.

I agree with you completely about the autoclaves.

No....I do not think it has all that much to do with luck. From what I learned calling just about every dental supplier out there, they were perplexed as to why there was so much fear out there regarding dental products. I explained to them the need for total gluten-free status with regards to products and they replied that there would be no need to use any gluten containing ingredients in dental toothpaste, compounds, etc. They use gums for thickeners as the consistency gained from using them gave the product the perfect desired result. Gums are highly problematic for Celiacs and there may also be other ingredients which can cause sensitivity reactions. When I reacted violently ( and I mean violently) to the gums in the impression compound, it was exactly the same reaction I get from ingesting a few crumbs of gluten....exactly. That's what threw me off and then took time to figure out. You have no idea what other things you may be sensitive to or react to...it's a learning process that never ends. I, too, have very specific reactions to gluten, both neuro and gastro, until I learned that gums also mess me up exactly the same way. There was no gluten in the product and it wasn't CC.

I wanted to post my experience and what I had learned because I wanted other Celiacs to know that they should definitely check ingredients with their dentist but the fear of being glutened from the dentist, whether it be from products or an autoclave, is practically non-existent. A reaction to another ingredient, for those with GI issues to begin with, is much more likely to happen.

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Check the gloves and see if they are powder-free, or at least if they are using ones powdered with cornstarch.

Also, ask if the dentist or hygenist wouldn't mind washing their hands thoroughly before putting on the gloves (if they've just eaten some gluteny potato chips or just a bite of a muffin or took a sip from their paper cup of coffee covered in muffin crumbs, then the gluten can transfer onto the gloves).

And get them to put on a new mask. Often they pull the mask on and off, and go out to grab xrays or files from the secretary or grab the telephone handset...and then put the mask back on with their hands that may have come into contact with gluten.

Works for me!

Best of luck

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I do not use flavored dental floss because I like the unwaxed variety and that does not come flavored. I used to use the mint type when they did make an unwaxed, flavored mint type but that was pre-diagnosis so that won't help you at all. I would stick with the unflavored, unless you want to call the company and go through that exercise of trying to verify it's status. It can be a total pain....I spent weeks calling everyone but got the information I needed and learned a lot about dental products. I have had extensive dental work done and will, according my dentist, until I am no longer on the planet! :o

To add to this....I go every 3 months for full cleanings, have had multiple caps done, I am in the midst of having 2 dental implants done.....you get the picture. I am sending my dentists kids through college! In all this work, I had one severe reaction and that was from the impression compound. It was the damn gums, which I verified later by eating some gluten-free baked goods I made using gums (I normally do not use them in baking). I felt crappy afterwards so do not eat them anymore. My dentist knows how careful he has to be with Celiacs....I trained him well. ;) Go ahead and get your teeth fixed and, as long as you do the homework and make sure your dentist is on board with everything, you'll probably do fine. Teeth are important!

Thank you! I'll continue to use the unflavored floss rather than take a chance. For something that costs around a dollar, the risk isn't worth it. I'll let the husband use up the old mint floss. My dentist usually has cinnamon-flavored floss so I'll take my own when I go.

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Help, I have just started going to a new dentist because I needed a filling replaced

well, I needed a crown and I told them I was allergic to gluten and sulfites several times and they

assured me there was none of that in their products. I found out there are sulfites in the epinephrine

so I had been sick from that for two weeks already and then when I went back for the crown. I explained

the reaction from the sulfites, but of course they just looked at me like I was talking about the weather.

Then I mentioned again that I'm very gluten sensitive and they said there is no gluten in anything. They put

the crown on and I have been sick with sprue for over a week now, I have had this for 11 yrs and haven't

been this sick in 4yrs. I called and told them I was sick with mouth sores which are extremely painful and I

only get when I've been glutened, along with the other reactions including mal-nutrition. gastro-intestinal, etc.

they just told me there was no gluten in the crown or the cement right away, without looking. They don't want

to tell me the cement brand they used and are saying I must have eaten something, I've been eating the

exact same things every day for the past 4yrs so I know I didn't eat anything with gluten. Typically, my

sprue only lasts a couple days but not this time I know it's the dentist and was wondering if anyone knows if

the cement has Gluten and if it will leach into my saliva?? I did not have this reaction from a crown that I had

last year nor did I have it when I had an extraction two yrs ago. Not sure what to do, help!!

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