When you have recently discovered that you or your partner is pregnant, it is safe to say that the last medical professional on your mind is a dental one!
And as the months pass, it can be all too easy to chalk up any changes in your oral health to ‘just being pregnant,’ but as any dental team will tell you, as soon as you discover you are expecting, you need to book yourself in for a dental assessment.
Why? Because pregnancy brings with it the potential for many particular dental and oral problems, which can impact on the health of both you and your baby. And as you want to keep the health of yourself and your baby in top shape for the day they arrive in the world, it is important to see your dental wellbeing as an important aspect of prenatal care.
In this article, 5 areas are highlighted in relation to the changes your mouth may go through during pregnancy and how common dental treatments may change, for your information.
Fluctuating hormones can create a heightened response to plaque in the mouth, leading to bleeding gums or gingivitis.
And while this is common, failure to have it treated by your dentist Sydney CBD can lead to secondary issues, such as a higher risk of pre-eclampsia, premature birth or your baby being born underweight. So, if you notice the signs of gum disease during pregnancy, talk to your dental team.
Luckily, periodontal care does not really change when you are pregnant.
Your dental team will offer you a scale and polish to remove excess plaque and will probably prescribe a bacteria targeting mouthwash or toothpaste, to keep any swelling or bacteria at bay.
Of course, it is worth noting that with any scale and polish, there is the potential for your gums to feel slightly sore afterwards, but this is common in people who are not expecting too. If you have worries about discomfort following a deep clean, talk to your dental team.
Everyone knows the importance of diet during pregnancy and while it can be all too tempting to succumb to cravings for sugary foods, cutting back on them can prevent the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
But before making any dietary changes, talk to your healthcare provider.
Dental X-rays and anaesthesia
If you need an X-ray, it is important to tell your dental team you are expecting as prolonged exposure to radiation can cause issues for your baby’s cell development. Similarly, if you need a procedure performed such as an extraction, tell your dental team you are pregnant, so they can find a safe alternative that will not harm your baby.
Antibiotics and pain relief
Generally, it is safe for pregnant women to use pain relief such as paracetamol and there are no adverse reactions reported with antibiotics through pregnancy.
But, as always, if you are unsure about any treatment options, talk to your doctor and dental team beforehand.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.