Paint the nursery, stock up on diapers, assemble the crib and the list just goes on. All of the things that must be checked off of your list before your new baby arrives can be quite overwhelming, but don’t let regular dental visits fall off that list. Taking good care of your teeth is important to you as well as the health of your unborn child.
Dental Issues During Pregnancy
Not every woman will have dental issues while pregnant. However, pregnancy can exacerbate existing conditions and possibly bring about new ones. Hormonal changes can lead to something known as Gum Disease pregnancy gingivitis in which the gums are inflamed and tender. Women are more prone to cavities during pregnancy as well. This is often due to increased carbohydrate consumption as well as acid exposure in the presence of morning sickness. Regular cleanings can help to prevent both of these problems.
When to Inform Your Dentist
If there is even the slightest chance that you might be pregnant, tell your dentist. Notify your dentist if your pregnancy is considered high risk and share any relevant information from your doctor. There may be certain procedures that are contraindicated for you until after your baby makes his or her debut.
Which Medications are Safe During Pregnancy?
Painkillers or antibiotics may be needed for certain dental conditions. It is essential to disclose all medications that you are currently taking, both prescription and OTC. Your dentist may consult your physician to ensure the safety of you and your baby when recommending or prescribing medication.
Are Local Anesthetics Okay?
If you find yourself in need of getting a tooth pulled, receiving a filling, or undergoing a root canal, you can rest easy knowing that the anesthetics used by your dentist are perfectly safe for both you and your baby.
What About X-Rays?
In order to properly diagnose certain dental issues and certainly in the case of a dental emergency, x-rays may be required. As long as proper safety measures are followed, x-rays during pregnancy are completely fine. Your hygienist will cover your entire abdomen with a lead apron to block radiation during x-rays. Brushing and flossing daily are essential to good oral hygiene, but they are crucial during pregnancy. Combine good habits with regular dental checkups for the health of your and your sweet bundle of joy.