Pregnancy causes a range of hormonal changes in a woman’s body. These hormonal effects can lead to some dental health problems such as gum disease or enamel damage from pregnancy-related vomiting. The good news is that there are several things that you can do to protect your oral health during this important stage of your life.
1. Get morning sickness under control
Many women experience vomiting during the first three months of pregnancy. The acidity of vomit can have terrible effects on tooth enamel. Try to reduce your nausea by drinking ginger tea or asking your doctor for advice. If you do vomit, then you need to rinse out your mouth thoroughly with water and baking soda to neutralise the acid before it can damage your teeth.
2. Keep up dental hygiene routines
Pregnancy can be tiring, but you need to continue to be vigilant about your dental health. Always brush and floss every day to remove plaque from your teeth, and try to avoid relying on sugary drinks and snacks to boost energy levels.
3. Watch out for gum disease
Pregnancy hormones raise the risk of gum disease. You can help to prevent this condition from developing by keeping your teeth clean and attending regular dental checkups during your pregnancy. In addition, you should look out for symptoms such as bleeding gums. Consult a dentist if your gums are showing signs of poor health.
4. Be careful about dental treatments during pregnancy
Although it is important to attend dental checkups during pregnancy so that your dentist can look out for signs of gum disease or tooth decay, you should be careful about which dental treatments you have during pregnancy. Cosmetic dental work is generally best left until after the pregnancy has finished. Routine dental care should, if possible, be carried out during the second trimester, as this period is the safest time for the baby. However, emergency dental work can be done at any time.
5. Tell your dentist about the pregnancy
Your dentist is a great source of advice about dental health during pregnancy, so make sure you let yours know that you are expecting. Your dentist also needs to know so that your baby can be protected from potentially harmful medications and shielded during dental X-rays.