Pregnancy creates significant changes in one’s body, leading to important lifestyle adjustments. One of the things that pregnant women should not overlook is oral health. Because your body is going through hormonal changes, your teeth and gums may need special care. While you may have a lot on your mind during this time, make sure to add dental care among your priorities.
Here are some of the most common dental care questions pregnant women ask:
1. Should I change my daily dental care routine?
Proper care includes brushing the teeth twice a day and daily flossing. If you already follow this routine, keep it up. However, if you find yourself slacking off with your regular routine, you need to push yourself even more. According to research, bad dental hygiene is linked to several pregnancy issues including preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and even premature delivery.
2. Will I lose a tooth with each pregnancy?
There is a superstition that speaks of losing a tooth with each baby. This is simply an old wives’ tale that holds no truth. There is a feeling of teeth being loose during pregnancy but this is only caused by the extra hormones that cause ligaments and bones to in the mouth to loosen up. This can happen even if your gums and teeth are healthy, so you have nothing to worry about as long as you keep up with your daily regimen and regular dentist visits.
3. Is morning sickness bad for my oral health?
A lot of pregnant women suffer from morning sickness, which is not just frustrating but also harmful to your dental health. The stomach acids released from vomit have bacteria that damage teeth. To fight off this bad effect, swish diluted mouth rinse in your mouth first before brushing your teeth. You can also use a mix of water and baking soda as an alternative for mouth wash.
4. Why does brushing make me gag?
Your body is going through a lot of changes and can be extremely sensitive to everything. You may find your gag reflex extra sensitive even during simple activities like brushing teeth. Consider changing your toothpaste or going with a brush with a softer and smaller head. It may prove to be challenge to keep up with your routine but never skip brushing teeth. You are more at risk of getting cavities and plaque during this time and it is important to brush regularly.
5. My gums are bleeding. Do I have gum disease?
Don’t freak out when you see blood when brushing. Pregnancy gingivitis is a common occurrence that happens between the second and eight month. Your gums become easily irritated and oversensitive because of hormonal changes but this usually goes away a few months after you give birth.
6. Should I visit my dentist during pregnancy?
Of course! You should regularly have your teeth checked by a dentist whether you are pregnant or not. Keep in mind that you might need more regular dental maintenance while you are pregnant. Additional cleanings may be required to treat gingivitis.
7. Can I get x-rays when I’m pregnant?
Your dentist will make sure you are protected with an apron or a thyroid collar when you need to get an x-ray. If no extra protection is provided, don’t hesitate to request for one.
8. Is it safe for me to get a dental procedure?
According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, cavity fillings and crowns are essential to avoid infection on a bad tooth. They are safe to get as long as you go to a professional an ADA-certified dentist. However, cosmetic procedures should be put on hold until after a couple of months after you have given birth.