Your body changes in many different ways while you are pregnant. Did you know that pregnancy can also impact your dental health? It is extremely important to take care of your teeth during pregnancy because if you don’t, you could have some long-term effects for both you and your baby.
Pregnancy Dental Health Facts
Things You Should Do
While pregnant, you have probably researched some of the risks associated with many activities. One of the things you have probably heard is that it is not safe to go to the dentist. This could not be further from the truth. You should still come to your regularly scheduled cleanings. Once we know you are pregnant, we will even give you some extra tips on taking care of your dental health. Another myth is that calcium is taken from your teeth to focus on the growing baby. This is not true either but you should still take some extra calcium supplements because it is important for the growth of your baby.
Oral Health Risks
Along with your pregnancy come some dental health risks you should be aware of. One of the most common is gingivitis. This is because there are high levels of the hormone progesterone in your body. This ultimately creates more acid in your mouth during the course of your pregnancy and this can lead to gingivitis. If you have red or swollen gums or experience bleeding while brushing or flossing, you should have your gums examined. Gingivitis can be treated but if it is not, it can become a more serious gum disease called periodontitis. Additionally, the increased acid in your mouth can travel to your baby and create an increased risk for premature birth and low birth weight.
Another oral health risk is tooth decay. This is especially true if you suffer from morning sickness. This is because acid in your mouth can break down your tooth enamel. If you suffer from morning sickness, then the level of acid in your mouth increases and as a result, so does your risk for tooth decay. This can lead to cavities or tooth loss.
Once you give birth, you are still at risk for some oral issues. For example, if you breastfeed, then you will be at a higher risk for tooth decay during this time if you do not stay hydrated or if you do not brush and floss as you should. Additionally, you can suffer from tooth grinding if you have neck or facial tension as a result of breastfeeding.
Another thing to make note of is that while you are breastfeeding, you can lose up to five percent of your bone bass because your babies need the added calcium and your body provides it. This can lead to come of the risks listed before such as gingivitis, periodontal disease, and even bone loss around the jaw. This is why it is very important to eat a healthy diet as well as increase your intake of vitamin D and calcium during this time.
For more information about what you can expect, contact us at Agape Dentist and we will be happy to help!