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COHN Webinar: What a real pain! Appropriately prescribing opioid analgesics in dentistry


I had the pleasure to welcome Dr. Thomas Viola, pharmacist, clinical educator, published writer and professional speaker. Dr. Viola’s hosted a webinar on the Colgate Oral Health Network for Professional Development and Education, titled: what a real pain! Appropriately prescribing opioid analgesics in dentistry.

We hope you enjoy the interview and share your feedback with us at oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca

Chiraz Guessaier, CDA Oasis Manager


Management of dental pain is accomplished with the use of opioid and non-opioid analgesics. Since the treatment of such pain relies heavily on individual factors, it is essential for the dental professional to not only assess the efficacy of the prescribed analgesics but also monitor for their appropriate use.

The webinar provided participants with an overview of the pharmacology of opioid and non-opioid analgesics. Special emphasis was given to appropriate prescribing practices for opioids in the treatment of dental pain as well to the potential for their inappropriate or recreational use.

Participants were able to:

  • Discuss the concept of dental pain and the different factors that may affect a patient’s response to painful stimuli.
  • Describe the pharmacology and mechanism of action of non-opioid and opioid analgesics, their intended therapeutic effects, and situations which preclude their use.
  • Use case scenarios in developing an effective dental pain management plan which utilizes analgesics both aggressively and appropriately.
  • Utilize techniques for recognizing opioid-seeking behavior, and strategies for patient counseling and referral for opioid abuse treatment programs.

Acess the webinar online

Full Interview (18.12″)


Dr. Thomas Viola

In addition to his daily practice of the profession of pharmacy, Thomas Viola also serves the dental professions as a clinical educator, published writer and professional speaker. Tom is a member of the faculty of eight colleges, as well as several national board exam review courses.
He is a contributor to several dental professional journals, with pharmacology columns appearing regularly in General Dentistry, AGD Impact, Access Magazine and RDH Magazine. In addition, Tom currently serves on the Advisory Board for General Dentistry and as the Subject Matter Expert for Mosby’s Dental Drug Reference. Tom has presented hundreds of continuing education courses, nationally and internationally, in the areas of dental pharmacology and local anesthesia.

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