Welcoming a new child into your family is an exciting and busy part of life. Mothers-to-be have so much to think about, and sometimes things like dental care get overlooked in the chaos that major life changes can bring.
The hormones that affect your body during pregnancy can affect your mouth as well, and it’s important to continue with your cleaning routine, see your dentist regularly, and take care of any issues that might arise. We’ve outlined ways the next nine months might affect your dental health, and what you can do to maintain a healthy smile.
Pregnancy can Cause an Increased Risk for Gingivitis
The changes in your body due to pregnancy and increased hormone production will extend into the health of your mouth as well as the rest of your body.
One concern for pregnant woman is an increased risk for gingivitis, or gum disease. This is a tenderness, redness, or swollen-ness of the gums in your mouth. It is also characterized by gums that bleed during brushing or flossing.
Did you know? Pregnant women have an amplified response to plaque! At Creating Smiles, we can help you take extra gentle care of your teeth.
Gingivitis, if left untreated, can worsen and become increasingly painful. It’s important to maintain proper dental care during pregnancy, since some studies have shown a link between advanced gum disease and low weight or pre-term babies.
Routine Dental Appointments during Pregnancy are Safe and Beneficial
For the majority of women, a routine dental visit and cleaning are safe. Always inform your dentist of your pregnancy and how far along you are. Certain procedures and medications are generally avoided during pregnancy, and should be postponed until after your baby has arrived unless they are an emergency. These include X-rays, dental anesthetics, pain medications, fluoride treatments, and some antibiotics. For pregnant moms, we find ways to meet your dental health needs without the x-rays.
It is important to stay healthy for yourself and for your baby, and good dental health is a part of that.
A lot of new moms postpone their dental checkups because they’re nervous for their developing babies, but at Creating Smiles, we create an environment that is healthy for you and the life inside of you, so you don’t have to risk your dental health. We ensure the comfort and safety of moms-to-be, with everything from extra pillows to shorter dental appointments. Your health is our first priority.
How to Protect Your Teeth During Pregnancy
Be proactive in your health, and take care of your teeth daily.
- You can prevent gum disease by continuing to brush and floss at least twice a day, and flossing between your teeth. If you can rinse or brush after eating, you can help avoid gingivitis.
- Eat nutritious food and well balanced diet. Foods high in vitamins and minerals keep you, your baby, and your teeth healthy and strong.
- If you suffer from morning sickness, rinse your mouth and brush your teeth as often as possible to neutralize the acid and protect your teeth and mouth.
- If brushing your teeth causes you nausea, ask your dentist about alternatives. Some dentists may recommend rinsing with fluoride mouthwash and brushing your teeth without toothpaste until your morning sickness passes.
- Schedule a dental appointment for your second trimester to get your teeth and mouth checked for any concerns during your pregnancy. Your dentist can help control the plaque and prevent gingivitis for optimal dental health.
Proper dental care and a visit to the dentist during pregnancy can help keep gingivitis at bay and keep your smile healthy. Remember, the healthier you are during your pregnancy, the healthier your baby will be as well!