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Preventing Opioid Abuse

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Delta Dental recognizes that tackling the national opioid crisis will require ongoing collaboration across the dental, medical, law enforcement and education communities. As one of the nation’s largest providers of dental benefits, Delta Dental has been and will continue to be a leading partner in the prevention of opioid abuse. 

Tips to guard against opioid misuse

  • Share medical history openly, including any personal or family history of addiction and the use of recreational drugs. 
  • Update medication lists regularly; this helps dentists assess interactions between medicines. 
  • Take medications only as prescribed. 
  • Seek immediate help from a dentist if side effects or unexpected symptoms appear after a dental procedure. 
  • Discuss alternative pain management strategies, including the use of ibuprofen and acetaminophen, which can be equal to or more effective than opioids. 
  • Ask clarifying questions about confusing medical terms, diagnoses or instructions. 
  • Take an advocate to appointments; two sets of ears are always better than one to ensure understanding of a medical or dental procedure. 
  • Keep all medications away from children; store them out of sight and out of reach from young children. Do not disable child-proof containers. 
  • Pay especially close attention to teenagers who are given painkilling medication for dental procedures; make certain they are using the drug only as prescribed. 
  • Never share medications with others; it is dangerous and illegal.