When you’re pregnant, your body produces many hormones to accommodate the life growing inside you. These hormones can affect the health of your teeth and gums. Therefore it’s crucial to make sure your oral health remains a priority while pregnant.
3 Ways Pregnancy Can Affect Your Dental Health
You may experience some changes in your dental health during pregnancy. Hormones such as estrogen and progesterone are produced in abundance at this time and can affect the health of your gums. Here are three common ways pregnancy can affect your oral health during pregnancy:
1. Increased Acidity in your Mouth
Sudden sugary diet cravings in pregnant women are the leading cause of tooth decay, especially when the oral cavity already has increased acidity. If you have had fillings or crowns, it is important to pay closer attention to your oral health when pregnant.
2. Pregnancy Gingivitis
Swollen gums during pregnancy is called “pregnancy gingivitis.” Due to hormonal changes in a pregnant woman’s body, there is increased blood flow to the gums. This makes the gums more irritable which causes swelling when aggravated. Your body’s decreased response to bacteria during this period can increase the risk of gum infections.
3. Morning Sickness
Nausea and vomiting are quite common during pregnancy. They carry with them the risk of tooth decay from repeatedly coating the enamel with strong stomach acids.
5 Tips for Protecting Your Teeth During Pregnancy
Luckily, you can reduce these oral concerns above by maintaining healthy dental hygiene practices. Following these simple steps will help protect not just your health but also that of your growing baby.
1. Brush Your Teeth Regularly
Brushing your teeth helps reduce the risk of poor oral health complications when pregnant. Keeping the teeth and gums clean also prevents future oral infection in the newborn baby. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste is recommended after meals and before bedtime. Remembering to brush your teeth regularly is even more important if you vomit often.
2. Floss Daily
Toothbrushes don’t reach all the corners and crevices of your mouth. Flossing does and helps remove food particles that get lodged between the teeth that lead to decay. Be gentle when you floss though. Your gums are sensitive when you’re pregnant and can be easily irritated.
3. Use Antimicrobial Mouth Rinses
Rinses often come in fluoridated forms and greatly assist to strengthen the enamel and prevent cavities. If you vomit frequently, using a mouth rinse will help remove stomach acid coating from the tooth enamel.
4. Pay Attention to Your Nutrition
It is easy to get swayed by pregnancy cravings. Maintain a nutrition plan that makes sure you are taking in all your body needs. You should also avoid foods that can be detrimental to your oral health, such as sugary snacks, carbonated beverages and sticky foods. Focus on foods that are rich in calcium and vitamins.
5. Visit Your Dentist Regularly
It is important to let your dentist know that you are pregnant. Your dentist can provide great help and advice in maintaining your oral health.
Family Dentistry at JR Dental Care in Jacksonville, FL
Pregnancy can be a rather stressful period. Good thing is, at JR Dental Care, we are committed to making your oral hygiene one less thing to worry about during your pregnancy. You’ll receive expert care and advice at any of our two convenient locations in Jacksonville, Florida. Our offices are open all workdays, from Monday to Friday.
Schedule an appointment with JR Dental Care today by calling us at (904) 786-5850 today.