Why Pregnant Women Need Dental Care

Dental Care During Pregnancy West Columbus Dentist

Why Pregnant Women Need Dental Care

Dental Care During Pregnancy West Columbus Dentist

Pregnancy hormones and morning sickness can affect oral health, which is why it’s important to continue seeing our Columbus, OH, dentist throughout each trimester. While we understand it may seem low priority, skipping your appointments or ignoring tooth pain can do more harm than good.

Here’s why a trip to the dentist is perfectly safe during pregnancy.

Why Dental Care Needs to Continue During Pregnancy

Going to the dentist while pregnant is recommended by the American Dental Association, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the American Academy of Pediatrics. While pregnant, you have a higher risk for tooth decay and gum disease which makes regular visits all the more while. Moreover, it’s also true that your oral health is connected to the overall health of you and your baby so it’s in your best interest to take keeping up with dental checkups seriously.

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Morning Sickness and Tooth Decay

When you vomit, the stomach acid wears away the natural enamel on your teeth. As a result, you may have cavities or sensitive teeth during pregnancy. Each pregnancy is different. If you’re having oral health issues, Dr. Gibson can work to determine if morning sickness plays a role. In general, we recommend you wait 30 minutes after vomiting to brush your teeth. That way, your tooth enamel has enough time to recover after being exposed to stomach acid.

Hormonal Changes and Gingivitis

Pregnancy hormones can increase your risk of early gum disease (gingivitis), especially during the second trimester. If your gums are bleeding, swollen, or sore, you’re not alone as approximately 40% of pregnant women develop gingivitis. Likewise, if you already had gum disease before pregnancy, you may notice your symptoms getting worse.

Pregnancy gingivitis is caused by hormone fluctuations that increase blood flow to your gums. These hormones may also affect your body’s ability to fight dental plaque. Since you’re at an increased risk for gum disease, it’s important to continue seeing Dr. Gibson. He’ll be able to help you mitigate the effects of pregnancy gingivitis so you can maintain good oral health.

Dental Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

Let Dr. Gibson know if you’re pregnant or suspect you might be. We take extra precautions during your dental appointment to ensure the safety of you and your unborn child. For example, we may postpone certain dental procedures if you have a high-risk pregnancy.

While a dental exam and teeth cleaning are safe at any point of your pregnancy, you’ll want to avoid major procedures during the first trimester. However, Dr. Gibson may recommend urgent dental care for an abscessed tooth or other oral health emergency where there is risk of infection.

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During pregnancy, we are still able to take some dental X-rays. X-rays have come a long way in recent years thanks to technological advancements and the radiation level is quite minimal so it’s perfectly safe for you and the baby. They also allow Dr. Gibson to see what is happening inside your mouth. We share your concern for a healthy pregnancy, which is why we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

Make an Appointment

Our dentist in Columbus, OH, and his team are dedicated to helping you maintain good oral health by providing preventive dentistry services. To request an appointment with us, call Gibson Dental today at (614) 878-9562.

This blog post has been updated.