No one enjoys going to the dentist, but you become more prone to some dental problems when you are pregnant. Pregnant women are more likely to develop problems such as tooth decay, loose teeth, and gum disease, so maintaining proper oral health is important to avoid infections that could give your body or Baby problems.
What causes dental problems when pregnant?
Tooth decay can be caused by increased acidity in the mouth that is a side effect to pregnancy. The problem can be exacerbated by morning sickness and vomiting because of the acidity levels that damage teeth. Loose teeth could be caused by increased levels of estrogen and progesterone that affect the ligaments and bones supporting your teeth. Even if you don’t have gum problems you could have loose teeth. Gum disease or gingivitis could occur due to changes in hormone levels when pregnant.
If you feel any dental problems, consult your dentist and be sure to tell him or her that you are pregnant. You want to avoid dental x-rays if you can, although no single x-ray should cause issues. If you take medication for dental problems, be sure that the dosage is safe for you and Baby. Remember to take good precautionary measures: use a soft bristled toothbrush, brush at least twice a day, floss regularly, and use a fluoride mouthwash. If you have morning sickness, a good idea is to mix some baking soda in a cup of water as a mouthwash. Also try to limit unhealthy, in-between-meal snacks.
- “What to Expect for Your Oral Health.” Mouth Healthy. American Dental Association, n.d. Web.
- Committee on Health Care for Underserved Women. “Oral Health Care During Pregnancy and Through the Lifespan: Number 569.” ACOG. American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 8/13/2015. Web.