It is important for both an expectant mother and her unborn baby to maintain healthy teeth and gums during pregnancy. This means practicing good oral hygiene and having regular visits to the dentist during this special time in a mother’s life. There are some common problems that pregnant women face involving their oral health. Here are some dental issues to watch out for during pregnancy.
Changes in hormone levels can irritate the gums, increase sensitivity, and trigger gum disease. Pregnancy gingivitis is a common issue that triggers bleeding gums during brushing and flossing. The condition can advance to serious periodontal disease if not treated, and end up harming the bones that secure teeth in place. Therefore, tooth loss is possible for serious cases. Tooth decay and infection are other effects of pregnancy gingivitis, and it can even cause the baby to be born with low birth weight.
Morning sickness not only makes an expectant mother feel terrible, it can actually cause tooth decay and damage teeth. These results are linked to the increased acid in a mother’s mouth during morning sickness. Sometimes switching toothpastes helps relieve feelings of sickness, so dentists may have suggestions about specific toothpastes to try that might reduce morning sickness.
Possible at any time during pregnancy, a large red lump can form on irritated gums. It may bleed, become crusty, cause discomfort, and impact speaking and eating. This growth is called a pregnancy tumor and requires treatment from a dental health professional.