Pregnancy will change your body in ways you could never have expected. It seems as though, every day, you discover something new that has changed in you once you become pregnant. One of those surprising areas is your oral health. When pregnant, your teeth and gums are likely to experience change.
Why do your teeth and gums change when pregnant?
Your teeth will change because there are higher levels of progesterone and estrogen in your body. These hormones can act to loosen the bones and tissue that secure your teeth in place. When these links are looser, it is easier for your teeth to get loose and shift in your mouth.
On top of this, when you are pregnant, the hormone levels change the way your body reacts to bacteria in your mouth and on your teeth – i.e., plaque. This change makes you more susceptible to gum disease.
What are the dangers of poor oral health in pregnancy?
If you do develop gum disease, this can present in a few different ways. First, gum disease can cause swollen and bleeding gums. Second, left untreated, this can develop into the more serious conditions of periodontitis and pregnancy gingivitis.
While gum disease might not seem that serious, links have been found between gum disease and other pregnancy issues. These include:
– A higher risk of pre-eclampsia.
– Giving birth to an underweight child.
– Premature birth.
These dangers are a real risk, so taking care of your dental hygiene as a pregnant woman is essential for both your health and the health of your baby. If you start seeing symptoms of gum disease, make sure to visit your dentist. Many like http://www.britesmilesdentistry.com/ can be a great place for pregnant women) to find resources.
How can you look after your dental health?
If you experience any symptoms of gum disease or other dental health issues, visiting a dentist is your essential first step. The treatment for gum disease is safe for pregnant women and involves your dentist deep cleaning under your gums to remove bacteria. The only repercussions you’ll face are sore gums
However, when looking for preventative measures, you can do a few things as a pregnant woman.
Regular dental health preventative measures apply: brushing your teeth at least twice daily. This routine should be regular and involve using fluoride toothpaste to ensure sturdy cleaning. In addition, even without issues, you should make regular visits to your dentist to catch any problems early. Sharing your pregnancy news (even when early in your pregnancy) is important, as x-rays are usually avoided by dentists when your are pregnant.
It can also help your dental health to be careful with your diet. Sugary foods are bad for your teeth and more prone to create harmful bacteria on your teeth. With less sugar, you are less likely to face tooth decay. Instead, consuming more fresh fruit and vegetables will help your teeth grow stronger, improve your oral health, and help your baby’s development.