Pregnancy is one of the most fascinating and interesting times in a woman’s life. In some ways, it seems that every part of the body goes haywire, setting the expectant mother up for a 40 week battle. On the other hand, it is perhaps the best opportunity for a woman to learn more about protecting her health. When your every decision impacts your health as well as the health of your unborn baby, you are instantly motivated to make wiser, healthier choices.
In the shift towards better health, you can partner with your periodontist for help in understanding the relationship between gum disease and pregnancy. Not only is it safe to have your teeth cleaned during pregnancy, but your dental visits will also provide you with important feedback on how to prevent and/or control this common disease.
Ideally, women who are planning to become pregnant should be free from gum disease. This may involve a professional dental exam, x-rays, and the appropriate cleaning procedure. If this is not possible, a dental visit should be scheduled as soon as possible after confirming the pregnancy. These steps are important since gum disease is a chronic infection that is marked by inflammation, a condition that is of particular concern for pregnant women.
An increasing body of research draws a strong link between gum disease and premature childbirth, low birth weight, and other potentially avoidable consequences.
General fatigue, frequent meals, increased hormone levels, and nausea can make plaque control difficult and gingivitis a more pressing concern.
Brushing and flossing should be performed as thoroughly as possible after meals and at bedtime. Although regularly scheduled dental visits are recommended, more frequent visits are indicated if signs of inflammation are noted. This may include:
- Bleeding during brushing or flossing
- Tender, swollen gums
- Cysts, bumps, or other lesions on the gums
- Visible plaque or tarter buildup around the gumline
When gum disease threatens your health or the health of your unborn child, your periodontist at Park Cities Periodontics and Implant Dentistry can provide the treatment that is best for you. Get on the road to better oral health by calling to schedule your appointment today.