Pregnancy

Things to Know about Oral Health and Pregnancy

Health

Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful yet challenging phases in the life of any woman. As she waits for her bundle of joy to emerge, the would-be-mother also experiences a lot of physical and emotional changes.

During this phase, your oral health also goes through a lot of ups and down. Pregnancy brings with it a number of hormonal changes that enhance the risk of gum ailment and other oral problems which can even affect the health of your baby.

Here are some of the things that you should be aware of your oral health when you are pregnant. Just take a look.

  • Gingivitis – At the time of pregnancy, about 70% of the women can develop a condition known as pregnancy gingivitis. That is why it is vital that you be more careful and keep doing your daily flossing and brushing for keeping the plaque under control. You should follow the things written below –
    • Brush with a softer toothbrush and brush at least twice daily.
    • Go for a toothpaste that contains fluoride for strengthening the teeth against decay.
    • Consult with your dentist regarding your ongoing gum problem.
  • If you suffer from gum issues during pregnancy, you should also get the gums checked by a professional after pregnancy. For most women, the issues of gum heal after pregnancy on their own. But for a small number of people, an enhanced level of gum ailment can develop which needs to be resolved.
  • Morning Sickness – The morning sickness happens to be an essential part of pregnancy. It brings up concerns about oral health as the acid from the stomach can be strong enough for contributing to the erosion of the teeth. Your teeth can be affected in a similar way if acid reflux or heartburn occurs in the later part of your pregnancy. After about of morning sickness, although you will be tempted to brush your teeth instantly, you should wait for some time and wash with water and baking soda afterward. The basic baking soda will help in neutralizing the acid from the stomach. You can mix 1 teaspoon of it in a cup of water. After that, use the mixture for rinsing the mouth with water.  Keep the following in mind –
    • You should start using a bland-testing toothpaste during pregnancy if the morning sickness is keeping you from brushing the teeth. You can ask your dentist about the brand that you can use.
  • If you suffer from bouts of frequent vomiting, you can rinse the mouth with an alcohol-free mouth rinse or water. Ask the hygienist or dentist for recommending brands.
  • Ptyalism– During pregnancy, you can suffer from excessive saliva or ptyalism. In order to cope with that increase in saliva, you should drink plenty of water for enhancing swallowing.
  • Dysgeusia – You can also experience a bad taste in your mouth or experience changing taste buds which are known as dysgeusia. For coping with that you can do the following –
      • Drink lemonade, add lemon to water and suck on the citrus drops.
    • Brush frequently and gargle with the baking soda (1/4th teaspoon) and water (1 cup) for neutralizing the pH levels.
  • For decreasing metallic tastes, you should use plastic dinnerware.

  • Food Cravings – Some of the women experience unusual amount of food cravings or evasion when they are pregnant.  There can be a regular desire for the sugary snacks that enhance your risk of tooth decay. But you should try to cut down your level of sugar intake. If it is impossible to curb the craving, you can try fresh fruits. After having sugary treats, you should brush your teeth or rinse your mouth with alcohol-free mouthwash.

Stick to a Healthy Diet during Pregnancy

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You should have a balanced diet during pregnancy. About 3 months after pregnancy the first teeth of the baby emerge. The healthy diets contain dairy products rich in calcium like yogurt and cheese that are also good sources of the essential minerals and are great for the gums, teeth, and bones of the baby. You should also enhance the intake of vitamin D as it helps in the absorption of calcium. Go for fortified margarine, cheese, eggs and fatty fish like salmon for that.

The above are some the things that you should keep in mind in order to take care of your oral health and that of your baby, while you are pregnant. Apart from the above, you should also let your dentist at the best dental clinic know as soon as you are pregnant as she may adjust your treatments and medications for keeping you and your baby healthy.

During the second trimester, minor dental procedures like professional cleaning or getting a cavity filled are possible. However, consult with your dentist regarding that and make sure that your OB/GYNs and dentist work together so that you get just what’s best for you and your little one.