Pregnancy and the mouth:
Congratulations! I’d imagine, while pregnant, most mothers to be tend to fixate on the health of their babies. Its important to remember your own health too. Unfortunately, the changes in your hormone levels and immune system can leave you, and particularly your gums, open to problems. So I thought I’d go through some of these and suggest some tips to help:
Morning Sickness: If your struggling with regular morning sickness its likely that the enamel of your teeth is being worn down by acid and this may be causing sensitivity. Try to counteract the acidity by eating alkaline foods like cheese and drinking milk. Avoid brushing your teeth soon after vomiting as they will still be soft and this can make the problem worse. You can also try toothpastes such as Sensodyne pro-enamel to help.
Gum Problems: Most pregnant mothers will suffer from Pregnancy Gingivitis at some stage, especially the first trimester.This is indicated by red, inflamed and bleeding gums and may cause discomfort. Its important to maintain good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing well and attending the dentist or hygienist for a cleaning. Mouth washes such as Listerine can also help. Often to keep on top of these problems, you will need to spend more time on them than had been the case prior to your pregnancy.
Some studies have linked more extensive gum problems such as periodontal disease in the mother with premature and low birth weight babies, so keeping on top of your oral health will be of benefit for your baby too.
General Dentistry: It is safe to have dentistry done when your pregnant. We don’t tend to take x-rays but can do so with the help of a lead apron if necessary. We also tend to avoid prescribing antibiotics, if possible. Often more routine treatment, that isn’t urgent, can be postponed until after you’ve had your baby if you prefer.