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.
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 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.
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.