Pregnancy is a wonderful journey marked by several physical and hormonal changes. Amid the excitement, pregnant moms must prioritise their oral health. Maintaining adequate oral hygiene assists both the mother's health and the growing child in the long run. In this post, we'll look at the most common dental concerns that might emerge during pregnancy and offer practical tips for keeping those smiles bright.
1. Bleeding Gums : Physiological changes during pregnancy might enhance sensitivity and susceptibility to oral health concerns. Hormonal changes in pregnant women can cause swollen and bleeding gums, often known as pregnancy gingivitis. Proper dental cleaning, moderate gum massage with mustard oil, intake of citrus foods such as oranges, and seasonal vegetables may reduce the impact. Non-invasive scaling and oral prophylaxis may be performed as needed.
2. Yellowing of Teeth : Tartar, often known as plaque, calcifies into dental calculus, which can cause yellowing of teeth, gum disease and cavities. Tartar is formed when bacteria mix with proteins and other food particles that remain in the mouth. Daily brushing twice a day with foamy toothpaste and medicated mouthwashes can help prevent plaque build up and reduce the risk of gum disease. To avoid gum irritation, use a toothbrush with soft bristles. Professional tooth cleaning/scaling is often recommended.
3. Dental Caries (Cavities) : During pregnancy, the risk of developing cavities may rise owing to dietary changes such as increased snacking, increased acidity in the mouth due to vomiting, or dry mouth. Expectant mothers should have regular dental check-ups (every three months). Proper teeth brushing, especially before bedtime, and keeping healthy eating habits will maintain good oral and dental health.
4. Dry Mouth : Adequate hydration is essential for avoiding dry mouth, a typical side effect of pregnancy. Saliva is essential for neutralising acids and promoting dental health. Make sure to drink at least 7-8 glasses of water each day. Avoid spicy & oily foods, alcohol, smoking and other forms of tobacco including passive smoking.
5. Morning Sickness and Dental Care : For those experiencing morning sickness, it's important to manage oral hygiene effectively. Rinse your mouth with water or a fluoride mouthwash after vomiting to neutralize stomach acids and protect your tooth enamel.
6. Bad Breath ( Halitosis ) : The presence of bad breath, often known as halitosis, can alarm some pregnant women. This ailment is temporary and often harmless, but it can be irritating. Bad breath during pregnancy might be caused by hormonal changes, morning sickness, or dry mouth. You may easily avoid and treat bad breath by practicing basic dental hygiene, staying hydrated, and eating a healthy diet. Remember that hormonal changes are a normal part of pregnancy, and with a little additional care, you can keep your mouth healthy during this wonderful journey.
Conclusion : Prioritizing oral health while pregnant is beneficial to both the mother and the growing infant. Expectant moms may keep a healthy and bright smile throughout their remarkable journey into parenthood by taking a proactive approach, practicing proper dental hygiene, having well-balanced diet rich in essential minerals, vitamins and proteins including calcium, vitamin D3 and iron, and obtaining expert treatment.
While routine dental care is essential, elective dental procedures, particularly those using X-rays and certain drugs, should be avoided during pregnancy. The second trimester is quite safe for most dental procedures.
Once your bundle of joy arrives, it's important to schedule a postpartum dental check-up. This allows your dentist to assess and address any lingering issues and ensure your continued oral health.