How Pregnancy Impacts Oral Health

As many as 2 out of 5 pregnant women develop gum disease and cause their gums to be swollen and tender.

During pregnancy, an expectant mother goes through many changes, beyond the baby bump and funny cravings. One of the unexpected changes she may face is changes to oral health that are not especially pleasant.

Gingivitis During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is such an exciting and also hectic time. There are so many new things to learn about your changing body and developing baby. You may need to stop eating and drinking certain things, while there are other things you need to start or keep doing that will ultimately make you and your baby as healthy as you can be.

One of the things that you must take care of while pregnant is your oral health. Pregnancy is a time when the gums are particularly vulnerable to gingivitis. As many as 2 out of 5 pregnant women develop gum disease and cause their gums to be swollen and tender. Some studies have linked pregnancy gingivitis with lower birth weights and premature delivery. Therefore, brushing and flossing are essential.

Morning Sickness and Enamel Erosion

A prevalent symptom during pregnancy is morning sickness. Caused by a rise in hormones, some women experience morning sickness throughout all parts of the day. It’s an unpleasant symptom to deal with on its own, but it can have compounding effects on your teeth, making it even more unpleasant.

While tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, it is particularly vulnerable to acid erosion. Frequent vomiting due to morning sickness puts your teeth in contact with a lot of strong acids. It can result in enamel erosion and cause oral health problems. After a bout of morning sickness, rinse your mouth thoroughly with water and brush your teeth as often as you can afterward.

Nutrition and Dental Health

Eating correctly during pregnancy is essential for the health of both mom and baby. Many expecting mothers have cravings, and sugar is often the go-to food. However, pregnant or not, sugar can be damaging to oral health. Pregnant or not, eating less sugar will go a long way towards protecting your teeth and gums. Also, focusing on eating more nutritious food will help in your baby’s development.

Schedule Your Dental Appointment

Keeping up with good oral care during your pregnancy also includes your regular dental appointments. Unless your doctor says otherwise, going to the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings is not only safe but essential to your overall health.

Schedule your appointment today at The Dental Anesthesia Center. We look forward to meeting you!

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The Only Board Certified Dental Anesthesiologist in Missouri, including the St. Louis Metro Area.

Call (314) 862-7844
Updated: August 31, 2023

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