Pregnancy Dental Care with Epsom Dental Centre, Keeping Mum and Baby Healthy @epsomdental #loveyoursmile #pregnancy
28th July 2014
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Pregnancy Dental Care with Epsom Dental Centre, Keeping Mum and Baby Healthy

There's an old wives' tale that warns women to expect to lose a tooth for every baby she gives birth to. Let me reassure you that isn't going to happen, but it is true that pregnancy can affect your dental health. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can affect the body's response to plague, and increase the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.

Don't worry though, there's nothing to panic about, as long as you take the right steps to look after your oral health. Make sure you are aware of the changes in your body and how that can affect you and your baby bump. It is most important of all to let your dentist know, so that they can do their best to help keep both mum and baby smiling.

Before Your Pregnancy

Visit the dentist before your pregnancy, if possible, so that you can have a professional clean and a thorough examination. It is safe, even advisable, to visit the dentist during pregnancy. However, dental treatments during the first trimester are usually avoided as a precautionary measure. This is a critical time in your baby's development, so it's best to steer clear of dental procedures that might affect baby growth!

Good Oral Hygiene Habits

If you already have good dental hygiene, you are less likely to have dental problems during pregnancy. However, it is important to maintain good practices, including brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, and flossing before bed. Although hormonal changes might make things more difficult, try to not let your normal routines slip.

Look Out for Signs of Gum Disease

Pregnant women are more vulnerable to gum disease, so it is important keep an eye out for any signs.Common signs of gum disease include tender, swollen, or bleeding gums. Research has shown a link between gum disease in expectant mums and premature birth. Approximately 18 out of every 100 premature births may be triggered by periodontal disease, a type of gum infection. Fortunately, with correct dental treatment, an expectant mother can reduce the risk of premature birth by 80 percent.

Eating Well for Your Teeth and Baby

Mums to be will already know that diet is very important for their little one. Maintaining a healthy diet is essential for your teeth and your baby's teeth. Your baby's first teeth will begin to develop about three months into the pregnancy. This means that it's important to eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in calcium. Dairy products, including milk, yoghurt,and cheese, are a good source of essential minerals that are great for you and for your baby's developing teeth and bones.

Be careful to not eat sugary snacks too often. Sweet cravings are common during pregnancy, but the more often you snack, the greater the risk of tooth decay. Studies have suggested that the bacteria involved in tooth decay can be passed from mummy to baby. Not the ideal start for your little one!

Morning Sickness Problems

Is morning sickness making brushing your teeth difficult? It is important that you still continue to brush, even if that means changing to a toothpaste with a less powerful flavour. You may also need to change your teeth brushing routine. Vomiting can coat your teeth with strong stomach acids, and repeated bouts can cause damage to the enamel. Try not to brush your teeth immediately after vomiting - as this may further damage tooth enamel – instead rinse your mouth out with water and wait for thirty minutes before you brush.

After Your Baby is Born

After your baby arrives and you have had a little time to rest, make sure you visit your dentist for a routine check-up. If you were in need of any dental work that was delayed due to your pregnancy, it is essential not to delay it any longer than necessary.

Remember, as soon as your baby develops teeth, you can brush them too. Wrap a little wet muslin cloths around your fingertips and gently clean in light circular motions with a non-fluoride toothpaste. Both mum and baby will be smiling!

Epsom Dental Centre has a team of professional dentists who know how to take care of expecting mums. If you need dental care during your pregnancy, we would be happy to help.

About the Author

Nigel & Maggie

Member since: 10th July 2012

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