Your Teeth: What to Expect When Pregnant
You have so much to think about during pregnancy, make sure to keep your oral health on the list. Brushing and flossing contributes to your overall health. Keeping your mouth healthy helps keep you healthy, and course, that helps keep your baby healthy.
You will notice a lot of changes in your body when you become pregnant. This includes your mouth and teeth. Due to changes in your hormone levels, your mouth becomes more vulnerable to bacteria and plaque, both of which create tender gums during pregnancy. These changing hormone levels can turn minor dental issues into major dental concerns and puts you at greater risk for tooth decay. Just like everything else during pregnancy, what affects you affects your baby. You want to do all you can to prevent gum disease because periodontal disease during pregnancy can increase the risk of having a premature or low birthrate baby.
Pregnancy, however, does not automatically mean damage to your teeth or health problems. If you continue to have the good oral habits of brushing and flossing like you did before you were pregnant, simply carry them through during pregnancy and all should be well.
A few things you can expect from your teeth and mouth during pregnancy:
- Gum inflammation: This is more likely during the second trimester. You may see your gums swell and feel tender as well as bleed a little, especially during brushing and flossing.
- Undiagnosed periodontal disease: Although pregnancy does not cause periodontal disease, pregnancy can exacerbate this condition, which is caused by untreated gingivitis. You may experience swelling of the gums and notice that your gums bleed very easily.
- Pregnancy tumors: These overgrowths of tissue appear on the gums, most often during the second trimester. They are non-cancerous growths believed to be related to excess plaque. They bleed easily and have a raspberry-like appearance. They usually disappear after your baby is born.
If you have gum problems during pregnancy, make sure to see your dentist for pregnancy dental care, as well as after giving birth.