Oral Health in Pregnancy

Updated: Dec 18, 2018


HERE AT COLLEGE STREET DENTAL CENTRE, PETERSFIELD, OUR STAFF HAVE HAD 5 BABIES BETWEEN THEM IN THE LAST 5 YEARS, AND ANOTHER 2 ON THE WAY!  IT'S ONLY RIGHT THEN, AS DENTAL PROFESSIONALS, WE OFFER YOU SOME ADVICE ON HOW TO MAINTAIN YOUR ORAL HEALTH DURING PREGNANCY:


1: Do I need to see my dentist during pregnancy?


In short, yes! Your body undergoes many changes during pregnancy including a surge of hormones which can exaggerate the way soft gum tissues react to plaque.

We would recommend that you see the dental hygienist for thorough cleaning and advice on caring for your teeth at home, and visit the dentist regularly.


2: How does buildup of plaque affect me now that I am pregnant?


If the plaque isn't removed, it can cause gingivitis - red, swollen, tender gums.

You may notice, for example, that your gums become more inflamed and appear to bleed more easily.


So-called "pregnancy gingivitis" affects most pregnant women to some degree, and can begin to show as early as the second month. If you already have gingivitis it is likely to significantly worsen during pregnancy.


You can help prevent it by brushing your teeth twice a day, especially close to the gum line using flouride toothpaste. You should also floss thoroughly each day.

If brushing causes morning sickness, rinse your mouth with water or with anti-plaque mouthwash.


3: Is dental treatment safe during pregnancy?


Yes. There should be no problems at all with routine treatment. If you are not sure what your treatment would involve, talk about all the options with your dentist. The Department of Health advises that you do not have amalgam fillings replaced until after your baby is born.


As a general rule, dentists prefer to avoid dental x-rays during pregnancy if possible. However, if you need root canal treatment you may need to have an x-ray. College Street Dental Centre use digital technology when taking x-rays which minimises the exposure to radiation that you might otherwise have with less modern x-ray systems.


4: What about smoking, drinking and diet during pregnancy?


Smoking and drinking in pregnancy can lead to an underweight baby. Underweight babies have a greater risk of developing poor teeth due to the tooth enamel not being formed properly whilst in the mother's tummy. You may not realise but their adult teeth are actually already growing in the jaws, below the baby teeth, when your baby is born!


A healthy balanced diet is always important, but never more so that when you are pregnant! You need to have a good diet so that your baby's teeth can develop. Calcium in particular is important to produce strong bones and healthy teeth. Calcium is in milk, cheese and other dairy products.


Give your baby the start it deserves, and book your dentist and hygienist appointment now on 01730 263180 or email us on info@smileabout.co.uk.


For further information or advice contact College Street Dental Centre in Petersfield, Hampshire on 01730 263180

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