With your new baby on the way, your oral health is probably the last thing on your mind. You are tired. Food cravings strike every few minutes. None of your clothes seem to fit. Visiting the dentist is most likely not on your priority list.
Even though your teeth may not be the most pressing matter, maintaining good oral health during your pregnancy is important for you and your baby.
Myths about oral health and pregnancy
There are several myths circulating about pregnancy and oral health. One of the most common misconceptions is that it is dangerous for an expecting mother to visit the dentist because x-rays and other procedures could present a danger to the baby. In fact, the American College of Radiology states that a dental x-ray does not contain enough radiation to pose adverse effects on the fetus.
You should continue to see your dentist throughout your pregnancy. It especially important to make an appointment shortly after you discover you are pregnant to ensure that your gums and teeth stay healthy throughout your pregnancy.
Risk factors for expecting mothers
Pregnancy can put you at risk for various dental complications, including the following:
- Gum disease. Increased levels of the hormone progesterone can lead to a build up of acid in your mouth, which can cause gum disease. If you notice red, swollen gums that bleed, make an appointment with your dentist. Higher acid levels in your mouth can also affect your baby, which increases the risk of premature birth or low birth weight.
- Tooth decay. If you suffer from morning sickness, the acid from vomiting can break down tooth enamel, which can lead to cavities, tooth decay, and even tooth loss.
- Gingivitis and periodontal disease. Nursing mothers lose a lot of calcium from breastfeeding, which could result in various forms of gum infections and bone loss around the jaw.
Maintain your oral health throughout pregnancy
The number one way to prevent dental complications is to improve your oral hygiene during your pregnancy. Make sure to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day. Drink lots of water, avoid sugary foods, and visit your dentist regularly.
We are committed to providing quality dental care throughout your pregnancy. Call now to schedule an appointment, or just fill out the contact form and click Send.