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Does the Dentist need to know?

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Rob - Dublin:
Hi Folks,

I've just finished 3 years of orthodentic treatment and have just finished today the Endodontic treatment and now have to have a bridge fitted and then have some cosmetic work done. (YES, it does feel like I have a BMW in my mouth or at least I feel like I have paid the prie of a BMW to sit in my mouth)

I am not on meds so just wondering if any of you have any advice on whether one should tell their dentist on HIV status or is it a personal matter. All dentists take full protection with their patients anyway, so it is probably not relevant.

Any thoughts?



I had braces and periodontal stuff done recently. I never felt the need to tell them because they looked like they were wearing Haz-Mat suits and goggles to begin with.

Dentists know how to wrap it up, I suppose!

How did your choppers turn out? I am thrilled with mine!


Rob - Dublin:
Yeah turned out fab. I feel I could be a model now :) :) :) (with a little help from Dr. Cos Surgery)

water duck:

Basically, no, they must always gloves & covered their mouth . In the early days there were cases where dentists infected their patients, that is why it's now a must for them to wear gloves.

If u r horny enough to do a 'mouth to mouth' with him, that is another thing  ;D ;D


I am one of those who avoided the dentist for many years. I finally went in this past December because Advil no longer controlled the toothache. I was really nervous about the HIV issue. I'd convinced myself that the dentist was going to refuse service to me due to my status. It is a crazy thought, and it might not even be legal to do so in the U.S.  I completed the medical history form and I checked "yes" next to HIV.  I was apprehensive about it, but felt somewhat courageous that day I guess.  When I met the dental assistant she asked when I last had blood tests, what my CD4 count was and whether i was on antiretrovirals.  When the dentist came in I noticed that the assistant pointed out something on my chart.  I assume it was the HIV status, but to be fair, she could have been pointing out my T Cell count, the fact that I had not been to a dentist in 6 years or that I have insurance. I have no idea.  During our "getting to know you talk," he mentioned my good CD4 count. He told me that he looks for all kinds of things in every patients mouth, but that he'd be on the look out for anything unusual.  For some reason he put me at ease. While he wore all of that stuff during the demolition work, he took it off to talk to me, he touched my shoulder to indicate he understood something that I said. I was so afraid that I'd be treated like radioactive waste and it turns out that he is probably the best dentist I've ever seen.

I told my friend Sharon about the experience. She is also poz, she thought I was crazy for telling. Her perspective is that they all use universal precautions and that informing the dentist that she is poz will only make him nervous and more likely to make a mistake or cause more pain when he working on her mouth.  I think that is in interesting point-of-view, one that I had not considered.  I'm interested in others' opinions.



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