Dental health is one of the most overlooked aspects to care for during your pregnancy. Just like your body needs to be cared for, the health of your mouth, teeth, and gums is equally as important. When you become pregnant, dental care should become an essential role in your prenatal care. Most don’t realize that being pregnant can increase your risk for oral health problems simply due to other pressures during this sensitive time. These problems can affect your overall experience and pregnancy.
For example, studies have linked some mothers with gum disease to having premature births. Premature babies can have health issues at birth and later in life more so than babies born full-term. Taking good care of your mouth, teeth, and gums during pregnancy can help you have a healthier pregnancy and a healthy baby.
Can Pregnancy Affect your Dental Health?
Your body will be going through many changes during this time. Some changes you can see while other changes are more hormone based. Some of these changes can affect your teeth and gums due to new habits and hormone fluctuations. For example:
- You’ll have increased levels of hormones, like progesterone and estrogen. These can increase your risk for certain oral health problems.
- You may start craving different foods. Certain foods you eat during pregnancy can affect your dental health. For instance, if you start to eat sugary foods, your teeth and gum health can suffer.
- You may start to brush and floss less than you did before your pregnancy. This is usually because you start to feel more tired easily and become busier with doctor visits. For some, brushing and flossing can even cause nausea due to the smell or taste.
What are Signs of Dental Problems During Pregnancy?
Some signs are things someone else may notice about you, like having a rash around the body or excessive coughing. Some other symptoms come on gradually like having a sore throat or feeling dizzy more often than normal.
The most notable signs of dental problems can include:
- Bad breath
- Loose or moving teeth
- Sores or lumps on the gums and in the mouth
- Widening spaces between teeth
- Receding gums (sometimes with pus build up around the gumline)
- Gums that become red, swollen, or tender; gums that bleed when brushing or flossing
- Toothaches or gum pain
If you have any of these symptoms, don’t hesitate to call your dentist and go over your symptoms. It’s possible to get an infection while pregnant that you may not know exists until getting checked out.
How to Prevent Dental Problems During Pregnancy?
Schedule regular dental visits before, during, and after pregnancy. At your visits, mention to your dentist the following:
- If you’re pregnant or will become pregnant in the future
- Any medication you’re currently taking or any changes to your current medicine routine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, supplements, and dietary health needs.
- If your pregnancy is considered high-risk, make sure your dentist knows this ahead of time. Alert them of any updates along your pregnancy journey.
- If your doctor has mentioned any concerns about your oral health while in the office with you. It’s important that your dentist and doctor’s recommendations coincide together so your pregnancy flows naturally and without complications.
Make sure to notify your dentist of any changes throughout your pregnancy journey. If anything arises, both your doctor and dentist can add preventative measures to help your experience stay safe and healthy.
Have you Considered Special Dental Care During Pregnancy
Pregnancy should be a time of low-stress and abundant health. Just like you would care for your body during this sensitive time, realize that your teeth, gums, and mouth are no different. If you work with your doctor and dentist ahead of time, preventitive measures can be taken to ensure your pregnancy goes smoothly. If you ever have oral health issues while pregnant, be sure to make an appointment and notify your dentist right away.
To help keep your dental care optimized while pregnant, contact our professional and pleasant staff here at Mountain View Dental. If you have questions or want to schedule an appointment, give us a call today at 385-324-3557.