Taking care of your health is of upmost importance during your pregnancy, and your oral health is no exception. To keep your teeth in good condition while your body undergoes constant change, be sure to follow these four simple steps.
1. Be particularly diligent about your oral hygiene routine.
During pregnancy, women will notice many changes in their oral health. In particular, you may find that your gums bleed when you brush your teeth and look much redder. This is known as pregnancy gingivitis, and you may experience these symptoms as early as the second month of your pregnancy. This condition is typically at its worst during the eighth month of the pregnancy but will likely go away once the baby has been born. However, it should be noted that gum health is particularly important during pregnancy, as gum disease has been known to cause premature birth.
The best way to combat pregnancy gingivitis is to maintain a solid dental hygiene routine. Be sure to brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice a day. You should also consider brushing your teeth after every meal, as food residue can fuel the bacteria on your teeth that wreak havoc on your gums. Remember to floss your teeth at least once a day and use antibacterial mouthwash to kill any remaining harmful bacteria. By keeping up with this routine, you can keep your gums in good condition during your pregnancy.
2. Protect your teeth from tooth erosion.
If you’re experiencing morning sickness during your pregnancy, it is important that you do not brush your teeth immediately after vomiting. Otherwise, the acids in your mouth may further erode your dental enamel. Instead, when experiencing frequent vomiting, try rinsing with a mixture of baking soda and water. This will reduce the acidity level of your mouth before you brush your teeth.
3. Drink a lot of water.
Dry mouth is common for women during their pregnancy. Unfortunately, this can lead to a number of issues including halitosis (unpleasant breath) and tooth decay. In order to combat dry mouth, it is important that you drink plenty of water. You can also try to facilitate saliva production by chewing sugarless gum. Be sure that this gum contains xylitol, as this will help reduce harmful bacteria that can lead to tooth decay.
4. Visit your dentist.
When pregnant, it is more important than ever to visit your dentist for a routine check-up. During your exam, your dentist will be able to check on the health of your gums and provide advice on how to improve your oral health during pregnancy. You will also receive a professional cleaning, which can help to treat gingivitis and other oral health issues. Just be certain to inform your dentist of your pregnancy during the appointment, as this will impact their treatment methods.
If you’d like to schedule your next appointment or learn more about how you can maintain your oral health throughout your pregnancy, contact Olympia Fields Dental Associates today!