Several new oral anticoagulants have been studied in the past decade, and have now started to enter the market. These drugs are reported to be as effective as, or more effective than, warfarin. In Australia, the Therapeutic Goods Administration has approved dabigatran, rivaroxaban and apixaban. The use of these newer anticoagulants is likely to increase in time, and it is important for dentists to have a sound understanding of the mechanisms of action, reversal strategies, and management guidelines for patients taking oral anticoagulants. This article discusses the process of coagulation, available anticoagulants and their monitoring and reversal, and provides clinical advice on the management of patients on anticoagulants who require dental treatment.