Expecting a baby? Visit your Dentist
Apr 05 2016 By Dr. Deborah Rello
Pregnancy is an exciting moment in all women's life. We may be more motivated to make healthy changes, like improving our diet and exercising.
But what many women do not know is that this is the time when acute oral problems arise. Morning sickness will increase the acidity in our mouth, and sweet cravings and hormones peaking will not be our best companions for sure!
Periodontal disease is a chronic, bacteria induced, inflammatory condition that attacks our gums and the supporting bone, and Pregnancy Gingivitis is the most common oral disease in pregnancy with a prevalence between 60% and 75%. During this period, our body creates a higher amount of Progesterone and Estrogen. These hormones are responsible for the correct development of our baby, keep our anxiety controlled and keep our uterus lining healthy and thick, but unfortunately they also help to unbalance our oral ecosystem. Hormone secretion increases to high levels from the 16th to week 40 of gestation, settling back slowly after childbirth. During this period, we might feel these symptoms:
- Red and tender gums.
- Bleeding when brushing, flossing or eating.
- Loose teeth and/or bad breath.
- Overgrowth or receding gums.
Untreated Gingivitis can lead to a Periodontitis (when bacteria affect our bone support), and numerous studies have related this disease to preterm birth and low weight index in newborn babies. For this, the previous symptoms should never be ignored and an appointment with your Dentist is a must!
All pregnant women should be assessed and monitored by their Dentist, and the Dental Hygienist will provide you with brushing and flossing instructions, as well as remove the plaque and bacteria through regular cleanings. Dental treatments (cavities and other treatments involving local anesthesia) can be done safely better after the first trimester, but urgent dental treatments can be performed during any gestational stage.
As you can see it is essential to visit your Dentist whilst pregnant - even if you feel no pain - to keep your gums happy during this time, as it is not only your health we are talking about, your baby will be healthy too!
For a dental appointment with Dr. Deborah Rello, our General Dentist, please call GMC Dental Clinic Jumeirah on 04 344 9150.
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