Being Pregnant at the Dentist: What you Should Know

We get asked a lot what you should know while being pregnant at the dentist and what you should know. If you have found that your teeth and gums have changed at all since you have been pregnant, there are reasons behind it.

Pregnancy-and-Your-Oral-HealthObviously there is a hormonal change that occurs with pregnancy which can cause your gums to become sensitive, puffy and bleed when you brush. This is called gingivitis. Gingivitis is the starting phase of periodontal disease.  This has been known to produce low birth weight babies.  To alleviate this, brush and floss regularly.

Morning sickness is horrible in itself, but it can really do a number on your teeth.  Acid can erode enamel and cause tooth decay.  If brushing your teeth isn’t an option after you throw up, be sure to swish and rinse with water to cut down on any acid in your mouth.

Because of that little one growing in your tummy, it will probably cause you to be hungrier during the day, which means more snacking and thusly more acid on your teeth.  Try to eat healthier things that aren’t full of sugar (sugar turns to acid on your enamel).  This is of course not only great for your teeth but for your overall health. Common sense tells us the healthier you are, the healthier your baby will be!

Once you are pregnant, you should continue your regular dental check ups to make sure everything is ok and nothing is needed.  If you need any dental work done, it’s best to have it completed during the 2nd trimester when the baby is having less of a growth spurt.  Also, try to avoid dental x-rays if at all possible.  X-rays these days have way less radiation than in the past but it’s still better to stay away unless it’s an emergency.  There are precautions dentists take if you need to have an x-ray, so don’t worry if you do.

Make sure that you are keeping up with your brushing and flossing, now more than ever.  Use a soft bristled brush, brush at least twice a day and floss once a day.  Use a fluoride rinse like, ACT, to help aid with cavity protection.  Try to keep up with this routine even after the baby is born for healthy teeth and gums and pass these great habits along to your children.

See also: Dental Visits and Pregnancy

Information compiled from WebMD, the Mayo Clinic, the ADA and staff at Szmanda Dental 2014 photo credit: Magpie372 via photopin cc