In a dental office, it is not uncommon for a pregnant woman to have more problems with their oral health during or after pregnancy. There is a fairly well known myth that for every child a woman has, she loses one tooth. The reasoning behind this myth is that the baby takes calcium from the mother’s teeth. The real reason a pregnant woman may be more likely to lose a tooth than before she was pregnant is poor oral care combined with being more susceptible to gum disease due to hormones.
Gum disease can potentially cause problems with the birth of your baby. Inflammatory bacteria get into bloodstream through gums and travel to the uterine wall causing contractions and possible premature birth.
One thing potentially contributing to worse teeth during pregnancy is the daily vomiting commonly known as morning sickness. The acidity can erode your enamel away taking some of your teeth strength with it. You can help this by avoiding to brush immediately after vomiting, but instead wait at least an hour. While the acid can weaken your teeth, your toothbrush can add extra damage to enamel with the bristles and motion.
If you have those cravings pregnancy is known for, rinse your mouth or brush your teeth after eating the sweet stuff. Not leaving the sugar to sit on your teeth for several hours before you brush your teeth again will help with decay.
The surge in estrogen and progesterone can exaggerate the effects of plaque on your gums. For these reasons, it’s important to keep your dental appointments! The optimal time frame for your check up is in your second trimester.
If you have any other questions or concerns about how to prevent decay or gum disease during or after pregnancy, please consult your dentist.