Combating antibiotic resistance

J Am Dent Assoc. 2004 Apr;135(4):484-7. doi: 10.14219/jada.archive.2004.0214.


Background: The ADA Council on Scientific Affairs developed this report to provide dental professionals with current information on antibiotic resistance and related considerations about the clinical use of antibiotics that are unique to the practice of dentistry.

Overview: This report addresses the association between the overuse of antibiotics and the development of resistant bacteria. The Council also presents a set of clinical guidelines that urges dentists to consider using narrow-spectrum antibacterial drugs in simple infections to minimize disturbance of the normal microflora, and to preserve the use of broad-spectrum drugs for more complex infections.

Conclusions and practice implications: The Council recommends the prudent and appropriate use of antibacterial drugs to prolong their efficacy and promotes reserving their use for the management of active infectious disease and the prevention of hematogenously spread infection, such as infective endocarditis or total joint infection, in high-risk patients.

Publication types

  • Guideline
  • Practice Guideline

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / adverse effects
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / classification
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Dentists*
  • Drug Prescriptions
  • Drug Resistance, Bacterial*
  • Drug Utilization
  • Humans
  • Patient Education as Topic


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents