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Did you know that women who have periodontal disease may be seven times more likely to have a baby who is premature or of low birthweight? The rise in your hormones during pregnancy can cause gingivitis and even tumours on your gums. Let’s learn how to take care of your teeth and gums during pregnancy.
Pregnancy can cause gingivitis
During pregnancy, your hormone levels dramatically increase. The rise in progesterone causes your gums to have an exaggerated response to plaque. This can cause gingivitis. Dr Gene Sherman — senior vice president of professional relations for AlwaysCare Benefits — says, “Women may experience pregnancy gingivitis, especially during months two through eight.” Symptoms include red, puffy or tender gums that tend to bleed while you brush or floss your teeth.
Pregnancy tumours on the gums also can occur. These localized overgrowths of gum tissue typically appear on the gums during the second trimester and are believed to be caused by a reaction to excess plaque. Pregnancy tumours tend to bleed easily and may have to be removed surgically after the baby is born.
Dental disease is dangerous for your baby
Periodontal disease has been linked to problem pregnancies. “Studies have shown a relationship between periodontal disease and preterm, low-birthweight babies,” warns Dr Sherman. “Chronic or acute infections caused by periodontal disease also have deleterious effects on both mother and baby.”
Even if you do brush and floss daily, any changes in your teeth and gums should be examined by a dentist.
5 tips for dental health during pregnancy
1. Be diligent about your oral hygiene. Frequent brushing, flossing and proper nutrition are most important in keeping your teeth and gums healthy.
2. See your dentist. Make sure to visit your dentist shortly before or after you become pregnant.
3. Ask questions. When you see your dentist, be sure to discuss the effects of pregnancy on your oral health.
4. Educate yourself. Learn as much as you can about the relationship between pregnancy and dental health. Information can be found at these websites:
5. Plan ahead. Whenever possible, take care of essential dental needs before planning to become pregnant. This will lower the potential for oral infections and their potentially harmful effects on your pregnancy, as well as decrease the likelihood of stressful dental emergencies.
Visit Family Care Dental Clinic today to Discuss Dental Health During Your Pregnancy
We at Family Care Dental Clinic offer our clients a wide range of comprehensive dental services for the whole family. Our dentists can help everyone in your family understand the importance of proper oral hygiene over time and the positive effects it has on your health. At Family Care Dental Clinic, we treat our clients to a soothing environment where they can receive quality dental care no matter what their needs are. Call (604) 987-3545 or please visit our appointment page to schedule an appointment with a member of our excellent team.