There is a saying that goes, “Every mother to be is beautiful.” Notwithstanding morning sickness, swollen feet, back pain, and exhaustion, this statement nevertheless is very true. When it comes to stronger, healthier, more lustrous hair and nails, many expectant mothers marvel at the perks of hormones gone wild. But pregnancy may not be as kind to your smile. Here are a number of ways that pregnancy can affect your teeth.
Those Midnight Cravings
Pickles and ice cream may be cliché, but cravings aren’t. And for many expectant mothers, the only cravings that satisfy are sweet and sticky. Add to that odd snacking hours and suddenly your brushing cycle is off. Even though your internal clock may be running off schedule, it’s critical you stay on top of your oral hygiene routine so you are guaranteed a glowing smile for that first mommy-baby selfie.
No one looks forward to morning sickness, and for some expectant mothers, it happens to be more like a 24-hour phenomenon. If nausea is accompanied by vomiting, your teeth are at risk. That’s because the acid produced by vomiting can wear away enamel, which leaves you vulnerable for decay, cavities, and gum disease. If you should vomit, be sure to rinse your mouth with water mixed with a dash of baking soda to neutralize any left-over acid. Only after you rinse should you brush, that way you are not brushing the acid into your enamel.
Gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums, occurs when layers of bacteria form plaque on your teeth. Remember those hormones that gave you the best hair day since your senior prom? Those are the same hormones that cause gingivitis. To avoid gingivitis, be sure to practice good oral hygiene; you may want to experiment with different gels and toothpastes until you find the one that agrees with your ever-changing taste buds.
Studies by the American Dental Association show that in certain cases, severe gum disease, or periodontitis, may impact a baby’s birthweight which could result in premature birth. It may also increase a mother’s susceptibility to develop pre-eclampsia.
Mothers-to-be have a lot on their plate. By visiting their dentist to ensure proper oral health, they have one less thing to worry about, not only for themselves, but for baby. And if you are planning pregnancy, it is important to get any necessary dental work out of the way before becoming pregnant to avoid any complications.
The family friendly staff at Dedicated Dental is your perfect partner for dental health for you and your growing family. If you have any questions about our family and cosmetic dentistry services, or you would like to schedule an appointment or consultation, please call (702) 551-5199. You can also request an appointment online.