4 Reasons Why It's Important to See a Dentist While Pregnant

Tuesday - 03.23.2021

If you are pregnant, you may be wondering if it's safe to visit your dentist.  

Getting a check-up while you are pregnant is perfectly safe and essential to your dental health.  

pregnant mom laying down

It's important to have regular dental visits during pregnancy for many reasons, such as: 

1. Pregnancy can make some dental problems worse – or create new ones 
2. Your dentist can treat any pregnancy-related dental symptoms that occur 

Should I tell my dentist that I'm pregnant? 

Let the dentist know you are pregnant and how far along you are when you make your appointment. Inform the dentist: 

  • Any changes to your medications 
  • If you've received any special advice from your obstetrician 
  • Any changes to your mouth including bleeding, redness, or swelling 

This information may affect the treatment your dentist recommends.  
Your dentist may choose to postpone elective procedures until after the delivery. 

Pregnancy-related oral health changes you may experience include:  

  1. An Increased Risk of Tooth Decay 
  • Pregnant women often consume more carbohydrates, which makes them more prone to tooth decay 
  • Morning sickness can increase the amount of acid in your mouth. This acid can affect your tooth enamel 
  1. Pregnancy Gingivitis

Hormonal changes can cause some pregnant women to develop a mild form of gum disease called 'pregnancy gingivitis'This condition can cause your gums to feel sore, tender, and even bleed 

If not treated, pregnancy gingivitis can lead to gum disease. Your dentist may recommend more frequent cleanings to manage the condition.   

  1. Lack of At-home Dental Care

It's easy to put off brushing and flossing if you feel tired or have morning sicknessBut, it's vital to maintain good dental hygiene during pregnancy because poor dental habits have been linked to: 

  • Gestational Diabetes 
  • Intrauterine Growth Restriction 
  • Preterm Birth 
  • Preeclampsia   

If you experience morning sickness, rinse your mouth with water immediately after, wait about 20 to 30 minutes and then brush your teeth. Stomach acids soften the enamel. By brushing immediately after getting sick, you could potentially cause additional damage to your teeth.  

  1. Pregnancy Tumors

During the second trimester, some women experience tissue overgrowths on their gums. These are called pregnancy tumors. This condition causes swelling between the teeth. Your gums will look red and may bleed while brushing your teeth. Pregnancy tumors usually disappear after the baby is born. 

Can a dentist pull a tooth while I'm pregnant?  

If you need a tooth pulled (extraction) or require another type of procedure, your dentist may recommend an anesthetic, such as lidocaine shot or nitrous oxide. Rest assured that any recommended anesthetic is safe for you and your unborn baby. 

It's more important than ever to maintain your oral health while you are pregnant.  
Continuing good oral care habits will benefit you and your unborn baby. 

Smile!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Elaina with DentaQuest

This blog is designed to provide general information and discussions about health and dental-related subjects. No doctor/dentist to patient relationship is established by your use of this blog or website. We are not providing any treatment or diagnosis on this blog, and it is not intended to offer specific dental or medical advice to anyone. The information or other content provided in this blog is not a substitute for professional dental expertise or treatment. We will do our best to provide you with information that will help you make your own healthcare decisions, however no guarantees or warranties are made regarding any of the information contained within this blog. If you have questions about any of the information presented on this blog, you should consult with your dentist. The dentists at Advantage Denlta from DentaQuest are licensed to practice in the state of Oregon and this blog is not intended to solicit patients from other states. External links may be provided on this blog as a service and convenience to our patients and other visitors to our blog. These external sites are created and maintained by other public and private organizations, and we do not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance or timeliness of any outside information.