Dental Care and Pregnancy: dos and don’ts

Dental Care and Pregnancy: dos and don’ts

Posted by Dr. Lee Jan 01, 2023

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Are you pregnant? If yes, are you taking good care of your oral health? Pregnancy is a very complicated and important phase in every woman’s life. During pregnancy, every woman is very careful about their health as well as the unborn baby’s. However, the one thing most women neglect or forget to take care of is their oral health. Your oral health goes through as much change as your entire body due to hormonal changes during pregnancy.

During pregnancy, hormonal changes can speed up any bacterial growth in your mouth which can cause gum diseases. Gum diseases during pregnancy can not only cause damage to your oral health but can also harm your baby. Severe bacteria growth can cause further damage if you already have gum disease. As a result, the chance of developing periodontitis or gingivitis is higher during pregnancy.

The first thing you should do while visiting your dentist is to inform them you are pregnant. This would help your dentist to determine the treatments beforehand. You must inform them of the details of the medicines you have been prescribed for your pregnancy. Any routine check-up can be done by your dental professional during pregnancy but any major dental procedure is not recommended during this period. If your obstetrician has instructed you to avoid certain medications you must tell your dentist about them. If you have been prescribed any prenatal vitamins it is highly important to inform your dentist about them too. Prenatal vitamins can have certain side effects or effects that can cause a certain change in your oral health. Informing about the medication will help your dentist to make a better diagnosis.

If your dentists prescribe you a dental X-ray, they must know about your pregnancy. X-rays can be harmful to your baby and for those special precautions must be taken. Often dentists would just avoid having X-rays altogether unless it is unavoidable. In such cases, the professional would cover the abdomen to safeguard your baby.

Avoiding any oral health complication at this stage is more important than any other time. You must continue good practices like flossing after dinner every day, brushing your teeth twice, washing your mouth after every meal. Having a fluoride-based toothpaste is very helpful as well as using an antimicrobial mouthwash daily. You must keep track of your gums to avoid any gum diseases. Symptoms like swelling, redness, and bleeding can be a big sign of serious gum disease. Keeping an eye on such cases can avoid severe problems.

A few other practices can keep your teeth and gums healthier as well as maintain your oral health. Having enough water can help you prevent dry-mouth issues. This not only prevents bacteria from building inside your mouth but also keeps your body hydrated. Keeping sugary food off of your diet chart is highly recommended. Don’t drink too much coffee or any drink that contains a high amount of caffeine. Maintain a healthy diet, especially consuming food high in minerals. Dairy products like cheese, and yogurt are not only good for you but also for your baby’s health.

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