Using An Inhaler? Here’s Why You Might Be Hurting Your Oral Health

Using an inhaler is a must for some people, especially those with conditions that make it hard to breathe, like asthma or severe allergies. Using an inhaler can quickly open up your throat or lungs, but at the same time, it may be causing unwanted damage. If you use an inhaler, keep reading to find out what the problem is and how you can protect yourself.

What Inhalers Contain

Inhalers contain many different medications depending on what they're used for. However, one of the things that most of them have in common is steroids.

Steroids are used in inhalers in order to quickly reduce inflammation and swelling in the lungs or throat, making it easier for air to pass through. Unfortunately, steroids have a lot of negative effects on people's health, and while the side effects of your inhaler on your entire body may be tolerable, it could hurt your teeth.

The Problem

When you take a puff of your inhaler, a portion of that spray goes down your throat and to your lungs. However, some of it won't make it that far and will instead settle on the surfaces of your mouth, like your tongue, teeth, and gums.

Steroids, even in small quantities, can be harmful to the tissues of the mouth. Steroids can cause sensitivity and bleeding of the gums, especially if you use your inhaler far from the next teeth brushing you engage in each day.

The Solution

Thankfully, you don't need to give up your inhaler. If you read the full directions on your inhaler, chances are you will see directions to rinse your mouth after using your inhaler. This is exactly what you should do.

After using your inhaler, first wait for it to fully relieve your difficulty breathing. When you feel safe, go to a sink and swish some water around in your mouth. Spit it out and rinse once more, making sure to pull the water between your teeth. This will flush any medication particles out of your mouth.

In addition, you can work with your dentist to protect your oral health. Your dentist may recommend coming in for a cleaning and exam more frequently than people who don't use inhalers. This is just to ensure that your teeth and gums stay healthy and safe.

Using an inhaler can make a huge difference in your breathing, so don't let it hurt your teeth. Talk to a dentist or visit sites such as if you need more advice on keeping your gums and teeth healthy while you're taking this medication.