Chemical Class: Tetracycline (class)
Uses for doxycycline
Doxycycline is used to help treat periodontal disease (a disease of your gums). Periodontal disease is caused by bacteria growing beneath the gum line. Doxycycline works by keeping the number of bacteria from growing. Lowering the amount of bacteria helps to reduce inflammation and swelling in your mouth, and the amount of bleeding around the teeth. Doxycycline is placed in deep gum pockets next to your teeth in order to reduce the depth of the pockets.
Doxycycline will be applied by your dentist or other oral health care professional.
Before using doxycycline
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For doxycycline, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to doxycycline or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Use is not recommended in infants and children younger than 8 years of age. Tetracyclines, such as doxycycline, may cause permanent discoloration of teeth and slow down the growth of bones. The safety and effectiveness of doxycycline have not been established in children 8 years of age or older.
No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of doxycycline in geriatric patients.
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving doxycycline, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using doxycycline with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using doxycycline with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Ascorbic Acid
- Cholera Vaccine, Live
- Ethinyl Estradiol
- Penicillin G
- Penicillin G Benzathine
- Penicillin G Procaine
- Penicillin V
Using doxycycline with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Aminolevulinic Acid
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other medical problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of doxycycline. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Candidiasis (yeast infection) of the mouth, or history of—Use with caution. May make this condition worse.
- Conditions with severe periodontal defects or
- Dental implants or
- Weak immune system (caused by diabetes, HIV infection, or patients receiving cancer or radiation treatments)—Atridox® has not been tested and evaluated in patients with these conditions.
Proper use of doxycycline
Doxycycline periodontal system is placed by your dentist into one or more deep gum pockets next to your teeth. A dental dressing or adhesive will be placed on top to help keep the system in place. The treatment may be repeated four months later.
The treatment period for the doxycycline periodontal system is seven days after your dentist inserts it. If the system comes loose or falls out before the 7 days are up, check with your dentist.
Doxycycline periodontal system does not have to be removed by the dentist; it will dissolve. The dental dressing or adhesive that holds the system in place may fall out naturally. However, if the dental dressing or adhesive is still present after 7 days, it should be removed by the dentist.
After the medicine is placed in your mouth, try to avoid any actions that may cause the medicine to come out. For example:
- Do not brush around the teeth that have been treated for 7 days.
- Do not use dental floss or any other cleaning tools that go between the teeth for 7 days after treatment.
Precautions while using doxycycline
It is very important that your dentist check your progress while you are receiving doxycycline. Do not miss any dental appointments.
Using doxycycline while you are pregnant (especially during the last half of your pregnancy) can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
Check with your dentist as soon as possible if you have pain or swelling or other problems in the treated areas.
Oral contraceptives (birth control pills) containing estrogen may not work properly if you take them while you are using doxycycline periodontal system. To keep from getting pregnant, use another form of birth control (e.g., condoms, diaphragms, or contraceptive foams or jellies) while doxycycline periodontal system is in place. If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.
For 7 days after receiving doxycycline periodontal system, do not floss or brush around the teeth that have been treated. Brushing or flossing may loosen the system or cause it to fall out.
Tetracyclines, such as doxycycline, may cause your skin to be more sensitive to sunlight than it is normally. Exposure to sunlight, even for brief periods of time, may cause a skin rash, itching, redness or other discoloration of the skin, or a severe sunburn. For a period of 7 days after receiving doxycycline periodontal system:
- Stay out of direct sunlight, especially between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., if possible.
- Wear protective clothing, including a hat. Also, wear sunglasses.
- Apply a sun block product that has a skin protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. Some patients may require a product with a higher SPF number, especially if they have a fair complexion. If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.
- Apply a sun block lipstick that has an SPF of at least 15 to protect your lips.
- Do not use a sunlamp or tanning bed or booth.
You may still be sensitive to sunlight or sunlamps for 2 weeks to several months or more after the 7-day treatment period of doxycycline periodontal system. If you have a severe reaction, check with your dentist or doctor.
Doxycycline side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- High blood pressure
- looseness of tooth
- tooth or gum pain (severe or continuing)
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Common cold–like symptoms
- gum discomfort, pain, or soreness
- pressure sensitivity of the tooth
- Abdominal or stomach bloating or pelvic pain
- gum redness
- indigestion, upset stomach, or stomachache
- influenza-like symptoms
- mouth pain or soreness
- muscle aches
- sensitivity of the tooth to heat or cold
- shortness of breath
- sore throat
- stuffy head, postnasal drip, or nasal congestion
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.