During pregnancy, taking good care of your oral health and overall health is important for your well-being and that of your unborn child. Good dental care could make a big difference in your health and the future health of your child.
Reduce Consumption of Sugar
Reducing sugar consumption lowers your risk of dental cavities. When you are pregnant, you have a higher risk of cavities because your saliva is more acidic. Decreasing the amount of sugary foods you eat also lowers your risk of gestational diabetes and excessive weight gain during pregnancy.
Dealing With Nausea and Vomiting
Many pregnant women experience “morning sickness,” which may not only take place in the morning. You might feel nauseated for most of the day. Some women find that nibbling on crackers helps with nausea, but this leaves starches and sugars in your mouth. Reducing snacking is better for your teeth. Instead of snacking, try chewing on sugarless gum to help with any queasiness. If you have vomiting associated with pregnancy, your dental enamel could become eroded. Erosion of enamel could increase your risk of cavities and other tooth problems. After you vomit, rinse your mouth several times with water. Wait about 30 minutes, and then brush your teeth with a fluoridated toothpaste.
Practice Good Oral Hygiene at Home
Your gag reflex might increase during pregnancy. You may find that using a small-headed toothbrush is easier for cleaning your teeth. It is important to brush at least twice daily for two minutes each time. Floss your teeth with waxed dental floss at least once daily. If you notice inflammation of your gums or light bleeding with flossing, gargle with salt water a few times each day. Bleeding gums is common in pregnancy due to an increase in the volume of blood in your body. This pregnancy gingivitis could worsen without good oral hygiene.
Visit the Dentist for Dental Cleanings
Professional cleanings are essential to good dental health during pregnancy. The dental hygienist removes plaque and tartar from your teeth and around your gum tissue. This could help to prevent pregnancy gingivitis from turning into more severe gum disease or gum tissue infections. If you do have gingivitis that is worsening or noticeable enamel erosion from nausea and vomiting, your dentist might recommend more frequent cleanings during your pregnancy. Some women may need to have their teeth professionally cleaned every two to three months while pregnant and for a few months postpartum.
Take Care of Any Restorative Services Before the Third Trimester
If you need an oral surgery for dental implants or a cosmetic procedure, it is a good idea to schedule it with your oral surgeon at the Good Samaritan Dental Implant Institute as early in your pregnancy as possible. Most oral surgeons will want to complete oral surgery for dental implants or cosmetic procedures before your third trimester starts. This is because your body and the growing baby’s body may have a higher risk of complications if the procedures are done during late pregnancy. If you show any signs of infection in your mouth before or after a dental procedure, be sure to inform the dentist or surgeon of your pregnancy. Learn more about caring for your teeth during pregnancy by contacting the Good Samaritan Dental Implant Institute in West Palm Beach, Florida.