Carrying a child to term, especially for the first time, is no easy feat- and will undoubtedly be a daunting process as you familiarize yourself with the changes your new bundle of joy will bring you.
In order to guarantee a more seamless experience; its best to equip yourself with all the available knowledge regarding the journey of pregnancy and what it entails for the different facets of life. Let’s take a look at one of the most important ones- your dental care!
Dental Appointments: An Important Stepping Stone
If possible, it’s ideal that you receive a dental checkup sometime before you become pregnant. This allows your teeth to be professionally cleaned, carefully examined, and have treatments performed (if needed) before your body and oral anatomy undergo the demands of pregnancy.
While pregnant, maintaining all aspects of your own health is the best way to ensure the vitality of your baby’s health. This translates to communicating with your dental professional regarding any changes you may experience within your oral anatomy while pregnant, and especially keeping up to date with your routine checkups.
During these crucial conversations, it is recommended you inform your dentist of the names and dosages of all the drugs, medications, and prenatal vitamins your doctor may have prescribed you. As well as any specific information or recommendations your doctor or obstetrician may have informed you of – allowing your dentist to completely cater to your unique needs.
What Can My Dentist Still Offer Me?
The short answer is, very little is actually restricted from pregnant patients within their dental office.
Urgent procedures required to maintain the integrity of your smile can be performed while carrying a child! Anesthesia administration, cavity fillings, and even tooth extraction may be safely executed during your pregnancy.
However, procedures which are more elective in nature such as teeth whitening, are typically postponed until after your child is born. Additionally, the usage of X-rays varies from case to case. Generally speaking, they are to be avoided- however, if absolutely necessary they may be safely performed through additional safety precautions introduced by your dental professional.
How Will a Pregnancy Change My Smile?
Carrying a child causes hormonal changes which are bound to alter the state of your smile to some degree.
These hormones typically increase bacteria development and its subsequent buildup throughout the mouth, leading to an increased risk of periodontal (gum) disease and a condition coined as ‘pregnancy gingivitis’, causing tender gums more susceptible to bleeding. In fact, almost half of all pregnant patients will become familiar with some form of gingivitis.
It’s crucial to be vigilant of the state of your gums, keeping an eye out for any bleeding, swelling, or tenderness. Gums struggling with poor health before pregnancy will inevitably worsen, luckily; it’s nothing your dental professional cant remedy, making routine checkups so pivotal.
Morning sickness is also a common unpleasantry your bundle of joy may provide you with, and many store-bought toothpastes can further agitate your morning sensitivity. To combat this, dentists frequently prescribe specialized tooth paste designed to alleviate the issue.
With so much happening within and around you during this journey, your smile lies more vulnerable to complications. Practicing a robust and routine oral care regimen should always be your first line of defense, this includes twice daily brushing (especially after meals) and flossing daily as well!
You’re Never Alone!
Our team is dedicated to help inform and guide you through the next nine months, and are eager to hear any of your thoughts, concerns, or questions. If you’re pregnant, or planning on becoming pregnant in the immediate future, be sure to book an appointment with one of our knowledgeable dental professionals today!