Anti-inflammatory analgesics are commonly used medications in dental and medical practice. Their uses in dentistry include use as analgesics and as anti-inflammatory agents. In addition, antipyretic action accompanies the medication. The action of these groups of drugs depends on the dose provided. Analgesic and antipyretic effects occur at low dose, whereas analgesic effects occur at high dose. Among the common side effects of this class of medications are gastrointestinal irritation with potential for ulceration, increased tendency for bleeding due to antiplatelet effects, and long-term chronic dosing effects on renal function may occur. Recent developments in the anti-inflammatory group of medications include the introduction of cyclooxygenase-II inhibitors. These agents offer potentially significant advantages because of their relative lack of gastrointestinal irritation. Because of this, it is likely that these medications will be frequently used in the management of dental and medical conditions. Patients will present while on these medications, and these agents may serve as medications for management of dental pain, postsurgical pain, and for anti-inflammatory effects. The current literature indicates that COX-2 inhibitors offer substantial benefits because of their favorable gastrointestinal profiles and because of their lack of effect on platelet function.