Pregnancy Gingivitis - What you need to know

Pregnancy Gingivitis – What you need to know

Pregnancy is a wonderful time. Your body is undergoing so many changes, which can be both exciting and stressful. While tending to all of your body’s needs, it can be easy to overlook dental health needs.

Pregnancy gingivitis is one of the more common health risks for expecting mothers. When you do not care for your teeth and gums, it affects not only you but also your unborn baby.

What Exactly Is Pregnancy Gingivitis?

Pregnancy gingivitis is a type of gum disease. The most common symptoms can be tender, sore, inflamed or bleeding gums. You may feel irritated and itchy in your mouth area, or you may notice a bit of bleeding when brushing your teeth. Your gums and mouth area may also feel swollen, which can make it difficult to eat or drink.

But it is not always easy to tell when you are at risk. Not everyone experiences pain or even redness. This is why it is very important that you schedule regular dental check-ups. Sometimes, only a dentist can tell if you are at risk for periodontal disease.

Pregnancy gingivitis develops due to a change in your hormones. When you are pregnant, there is more blood flow to your gum tissue. This causes your gums to be even more sensitive than before you became pregnant, which makes you susceptible to bacteria and plaque.

You may have enjoyed healthy teeth and gums your whole life, but research shows that almost half of all expectant mothers will suffer gingivitis to some degree.

It is in the second trimester of pregnancy that gingivitis usually occurs and worsens. Ironically, this trimester is also the stage where your body feels better, so you may not be suffering from morning sickness or nausea anymore. This makes it a good time to start paying attention to other health issues that you may have neglected in the exciting early stages, such as scheduling your next dental visit and cleaning.

Potential Health Risks From Gum Diseases

A more serious gum disease, Periodontitis, has other long-lasting negative effects. This includes loss of teeth, infertility, preterm labor, diabetes or a miscarriage.

This is due to an excess of gum bacteria. It is first under your gums, but can then enter your bloodstream, causing problems for your unborn child and damage to your body.

The good news is that, if treated early and professionally, pregnancy gingivitis is completely reversible. Your dentist can remove the harmful plaque and resolve your oral health quickly. However, you must do your part to incorporate healthier oral hygiene habits, such as keeping your dental appointments! By adhering to the following health tips, you can keep your gums free of gingivitis and increase your chances of a perfectly healthy baby.

Regular Brushing

Try to brush at least twice a day for at least two to three minutes each time. If you are still suffering from morning sickness and are vomiting often, dentists recommend only rinsing your mouth and not brushing the teeth immediately after. This is due to harsh acids that weaken the enamel on your teeth and can cause erosion.

Regular Flossing

A good flossing routine will get rid of plaque build-up and maintain clear passageways between your teeth, where germs and bacteria can’t hide and do damage.

Eat for Better Gums

Gum disease can be avoided by eating healthier foods. Fruits and vegetables top the list, and it’s best to avoid sugary drinks or snacks. Try to plan your meals around protein-rich foods that are also high in calcium and vitamin D, two essentials for women who want healthier teeth and gums.

Preventative Dental Care

Just because you have a dozen other checkups to think about, don’t skip the dental trips! Think of your dentist as one of the most important coaches on your team. During pregnancy, you should schedule regular cleanings and oral exams. You can ask for non-invasive gum therapy treatments to get a head start in protecting your teeth and gums.

Avoid Unnecessary Medications

Even though you may experience some discomfort, always check with your dentist first to learn which medications are safe for you during this crucial time.

After delivery, go back to your dentist as soon as you can for follow-up tests and routine cleaning. This will keep you on track with healthy gums and reduce your chances of gingivitis in the future.

If you still have questions regarding oral health and gum care during pregnancy, the best thing to do is schedule a dental consultation. Other information can be given you based on your health history and past pregnancies. Visit us today for more vital information and tips on staying healthy throughout your pregnancy!

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