Important Oral Health Pregnancy Tips 2023
Category: Dr. Advocate's Insights, Kids Dentistry, Oral Health
By: Dr. Advocate
Updated: January 19, 2023
Brushing, flossing and regular dental care is even more important while you’re pregnant. This is because your progesterone hormone levels increase during pregnancy, leaving your gums more prone to plaque accumulation and inflammation.
Experiencing puffy red gums is known as gingivitis and, if left untreated, may lead to periodontal disease. Periodontal disease leads to infected gums, bone loss, and possible tooth loss. Unfortunately, this disease is irreversible, so it’s essential to eliminate bacteria before it becomes problematic.
During pregnancy, routine dental visits are necessary to minimize and prevent bacteria attacks. Gum inflammation can be recognized as bleeding while brushing or flossing. The more you floss, however, the less your gums will bleed. So let’s take a closer look at ways to keep you and your baby’s teeth healthy.
Brushing and flossing
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- Brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste twice a day to prevent tooth decay
- Floss once a day before bedtime
- Use a fluoride mouth rinse before bedtime
- If you vomit from morning sickness, rinse your mouth with water
- If you feel too sick to brush, rinse your mouth with a fluoride mouthwash
- Drink recommended amount of water per day
- Drink water or low-fat milk instead of sugar-rich drinks
- Eat fruits, vegetables, whole-grain and dairy products
- Eat lean meats, fish, chicken, eggs, beans and nuts
- Limit sugary snacks and beverages
- Limit sweets like candy, cookies or cake
- Look for products that contain xylitol such as chewing gum and mints
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- Dental care is safe when you’re pregnant
- Inform the dental team that you’re pregnant before x-rays
- The dental team may recommend fluoride rinses
- They may recommended chewing gum with xylitol
- Xylitol reduces bacteria that can cause dental decay and gingivitis
Managing your oral health after pregnancy will prevent bacteria transmission to your baby. Oral bacteria are easily transmissible, so it’s essential to give your baby a healthy start. Continue to brush, floss, and visit your dentist regularly. Next, let’s look at ways to care for your baby’s gums and teeth.
- Germs can pass from your mouth to your baby’s mouth
- Use a different spoon when tasting their food
- Clean your baby’s gums after feeding
- Use a soft toothbrush or damp washcloth
- First tooth will arrive around 6 to 10 months
- Use a smear of fluoride toothpaste when brushing
- Don’t put your baby to sleep with a bottle
- Take your baby to the dentist within six months of their first tooth
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Pregnancy can be a challenging time to juggle a growing baby, countless appointments and daily activities. These helpful tips can help improve your oral health so dental concerns can be one less thing to worry about.
The more you know, the more healthy habits you can develop – saving you and your family from avoidable and potentially expensive dental procedures. Talk to your dental professional for more suggestions on improving oral health and check back for more blog posts and relevant information. Please share this site and let us know what else you’d like to know!
About the Author
Dr. Advocate is a board-certified dentist with 5+ years of clinical practice experience on a mission to provide accurate dental patient education. He believes everyone should access easy-to-read dental resources presented in layperson’s terms with relevant, up-to-date dental research and insight to improve their oral health..