How to Care for Teeth and Gums During Pregnancy

Looking after your teeth during pregnancy is important but there are things you need to be aware of in terms of how pregnancy affects your teeth and gums.

You need to take extra care of your teeth and gums during pregnancy because you are more prone to gum disease. During pregnancy the increase in hormone production causes your gums to become extra sensitive to the bacteria in plaque. Poor dental job leads to plaque build up on teeth. Bearing this in mind, it is really up to you to prevent or control this problem.

You need to take extra care of your teeth and gums during pregnancy because you are more prone to gum disease. During pregnancy the increase in hormone production causes your gums to become extra sensitive to the bacteria in plaque. Poor dental job leads to plaque build up on teeth. Bearing this in mind, it is really up to you to prevent or control this problem.

What Is Pregnancy Gingivitis And Periodontal Disease..

  • You may find your gums swollen, reddish and tender; they bleed easily when you brush or floss. This is termed pregnancy gingivitis.
  • Pregnancy does not cause gingivitis; instead the hormonal changes cause an underlying disease to become more pronounced.
  • Left untreated this condition can progress to something more serious called periodontitis.
  • Here the infection spreads to the bones and surrounding tissues holding the teeth. Research indicates that women with any infection, including periodontal disease, stand a higher chance of giving birth prematurely or giving birth to a low-birthweight baby. In this case it is seven times higher.
  • Therefore if you do develop this condition, getting treated should be a priority with you.
  • The procedure which you have to undergo is called ‘scaling and rooting planing’ which basically is a plaque and tartar removal procedure.
Understand how hormonal changes impact your teeth and gums. Pregnancy is a very beautiful moment in a woman’s life, however hormonal changes occur in our body that alters its normal behavior. This is the reason why it’s important for us women to take good care of our teeth and gums while we are pregnant. These hormonal changes increase the risk of developing gum disease because it makes gums more sensitive, which makes it easier for gingivitis to develop, and this can affect the health of the unborn baby.

Understand the increased likelihood of getting periodontal disease. It is very common to experience pregnancy gingivitis, identified by and uncomfortable swelling, bleeding, redness or softness in the gum tissue. A more advanced oral health condition (periodontal disease) may also affect the health of your baby.  Research has shown that an expectant mother suffering from periodontal disease might deliver a premature, low birth weight baby. As a matter of fact, these pregnant women may be seven times more likely to have a baby that is born earlier and smaller that the usual, which may increase the risk for future health problems and disabilities.
If you’re pregnant and receive a positive diagnosis for periodontal disease, your dentist will recommend a common non-surgical procedure called scaling and root planning. With this procedure the root of your tooth or teeth are deeply cleaned to remove plaque, tartar and bacterial toxins, this may reduce the risk of having premature or low weighted births. Additionally, this procedure should reduce many of the pregnancy gingivitis symptoms.

Avoid sweet food as much as possible. Even though sweets are craved a lot when we are pregnant, these should be avoided. Always remember that the more sweets you eat, the greater chance you have of developing tooth decay, plus studies have shown that the bacteria that causes tooth decay is passed genetically from mother to child. Moreover, the food you eat influences your child’s food preferences.

Avoid dental treatments at specific times during pregnancy. For precaution, during the first trimester and second half of the third trimester dental treatments should be avoided as much as possible. You need to let your dentist know about you pregnancy and have routine dental care and checkups.

Always eat a healthy, balanced diet. This is very important because your baby’s first teeth begin to develop around after the third month of your pregnancy.

Pay special attention to any changes in your gums during pregnancy. If you see any changes call your dentist right away.

Maintain a good oral hygiene to prevent or reduce oral health related problems.

If you can’t stand the toothpaste and toothbrush sensation due to morning sickness, change your toothpaste and toothbrush to a softer one.

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