Did you know that pregnancy can impact your dental health? Your body goes through so many changes during those nine months, and your mouth is not immune to those changes. If you are pregnant, let’s talk about what that can mean for your dental hygiene.
When you are pregnant, the medicines that you are safe to take are more limited. Be sure that your dentist knows that you are pregnant when you go in. There are many prescription and over-the-counter medications that should be avoided by pregnant women.
During pregnancy, you should avoid aspirin, ibuprofen, herbs, amino acids, and other medications. Consult with your physician before taking any medication.
Particular numbing medication and anesthetics that can be used in basic dental work such as a cavity filling, are typically safe for pregnant women—but be sure to discuss with your dentist before going through any procedures.
It is usually safe to get an x-ray during pregnancy. Dental x-rays in particularly safe. Radiation levels from dental x-rays are low. Your dentist will cover your throat and abdomen to protect you from exposure. If you have any concerns, discuss options with your dentist before undergoing any x-rays.
3. Tooth Decay
Pregnancy leaves women much more prone to tooth decay—aka cavities. There are many factors in pregnancy that makes women vulnerable. First off, morning sickness and consistently vomiting will be tough on your teeth and gums. Vomit is very acidic and can eat away at your enamel. Eating more carbohydrates can also cause decay. Carbs are more likely to get caught in the grooves of your teeth and cause cavities.
Be attentive to your dental hygiene during pregnancy. Be sure that you are brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day. Pregnancy can be exhausting, but don’t let your dental hygiene habits fall by the wayside—you’ll be happy you kept them up.
4. Gum Disease
Just like tooth decay, gum disease is prevalent in pregnant women for many reasons. Partly because of morning sickness, poor dental hygiene, and increased sensitivity. Pregnancy can do some weird things to your body, including damaging your gums. Beware of inflammation in the gums and any swelling and tenderness. Flossing daily and dental cleaning can help to reverse and prevent gingivitis.
5. Pregnancy Tumors
During pregnancy, small growths of tissue may appear on the gums. These growths are referred to as pregnancy tumors—they are most common in the second trimester. Pregnancy tumors are not cancerous. They are often related to plaque build-up. These tumors bleed easily and can be tender. They should disappear after your baby is born—if they don’t, see your dentist about, you may need to have them removed.