pregnant womanIf you recently found out that you’re pregnant, then congratulations! Finding out that you’re expecting can be a wonderful experience. It also means that you’re not only caring for your own health now, but for the growing child, and your pregnancy has now given you many more responsibilities. Taking care of your dental health is one of those responsibilities. Here’s some more information on how oral health is affected by becoming pregnant.

Gum Disease

Changes in your body occur as a result of hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy. More specifically, the increased levels of estrogen and progesterone can heighten the way your gum tissues respond to plaque on your teeth. As a result, pregnant women are more prone to gum disease. “Pregnancy gingivitis” affects most women to some degree, and generally starts as early as the second month. If you already had some level of gum disease before you became pregnant, it’s likely to worsen. Without treatment, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, a more severe form of gum disease.

Here are some tips on how you can keep your teeth and gums healthy during your pregnancy to help avoid this common problem:

  • Brush twice daily with an ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss between your teeth daily. This is absolutely important for combating gum inflammation.
  • Only use products that have the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
  • Eat a balanced diet. If you snack, do so in moderation.
  • Visit your Phoenix dentist regularly for a checkup. Although it’s a common belief that dental visits should be postponed during pregnancy, they’re absolutely vital. Be sure to let your dentist know that you are pregnant.
  • If you need help controlling plaque, your dentist may recommend rinsing at night with an antimicrobial mouth rinse.
  • If you experience morning sickness and start vomiting frequently, it’s important to rinse your teeth afterwards to prevent the stomach acid from attacking your teeth and gums. Try rinsing with a teaspoon of baking soda mixed with water.

Your oral health is an important aspect of your overall health, and your health directly affects the health of your growing baby. If you’ve recently discovered that you are pregnant, make an appointment with your Scottsdale dentist today to make sure your teeth and gums get the best possible care.