smiling pregnant woman in plaid shirtThere is an undeniable correlation between hormones and gum health. During certain times in a woman’s life, she may be more susceptible to gingivitis and gum disease. For example, due to hormone fluctuations, women are much more likely to experience flareups during puberty, pregnancy, menstruation, and menopause. Today, your Denver dentist at Metropolitan Dental Care offers a few tips and tricks for maintaining healthy teeth and gums during pregnancy.

Inform Your Dentist

First of all, it is important to tell your dentist if you are pregnant. While routine dental care is certainly beneficial during this time, elective procedures should generally be performed once your new bundle of joy has been delivered. In addition, be sure you inform your dentist of any medications and supplements you are taking. That way, he or she can alter your treatment as necessary.

Pregnancy and Dental X-rays

Today’s dental x-rays are much safer and more efficient than those in years past. They can, in fact, be taken whenever necessary during your pregnancy. Your dental team will take extreme care in protecting your thyroid and abdomen, shielding your baby from radiation.

Avoid Brushing after Morning Sickness

Morning sickness is a normal, yet unpleasant, side effect of pregnancy. It can certainly be tempting to brush your teeth immediately after an episode. However, it is best to wait at least 30 minutes before brushing your teeth, as the stomach acids can actually erode the enamel. Try rinsing with an antibacterial mouthwash instead.

Increase Your Calcium Intake

We know that calcium reduces the risk of osteoporosis and makes the bones strong and healthy (including the teeth). But did you know that increasing your calcium intake actually benefits your baby as well? Incorporate more calcium-rich foods in your diet, including milk, yogurt, cheese, almonds, and spinach. If you feel you aren’t obtaining enough calcium via your diet, talk to your doctor about taking supplements.

Floss Daily

Did you know that approximately 40 percent of all pregnant women develop gingivitis?[1] To combat this, it is important to practice good oral hygiene. In addition to brushing twice a day, patients should floss at least once daily. This is even more important for pregnant women, who are more susceptible to gum irritation. Flossing removes plaque deposits from the surface of the teeth and reduces harmful oral bacteria.

If you notice red, bleeding, swollen gums – or any other symptoms of gingivitis – contact your dentist right away. Early intervention can address the problem in a noninvasive manner.

Attend All Routine Dental Visits

For optimal oral health, individuals should visit the dentist at least twice a year. Routine cleanings and examinations are just as important for pregnant women – if not more so. During these appointments, your dentist can assess the health of your teeth and gums and detect any underlying issues before they worsen. Taking care of your teeth can benefit you and your baby.

Contact Your Denver Dentist Today

Metropolitan Dental Care has been providing top-tier dental care for individuals and families for over 30 years. We are proud to serve Denver, Lone Tree, Centennial, Parker, and Highlands Ranch. If you or someone in your family is expecting, we would be happy to provide dental services throughout pregnancy to prevent oral health issues from progressing. To learn more, schedule a consultation with you Denver dentist by calling 303-532-2626. You can also contact us online anytime.