If you or someone you know is either thinking about becoming pregnant or is already pregnant, there is something you should know. Your dental health affects the health of your unborn child. Young couples often overlook the health of their teeth when they decide to become pregnant. Pregnancy affects not only your body but your unborn child.
Prior to the decision to have a baby, it is important to consider not only your reproductive health, but your dental health as well. It can dramatically complicate your pregnancy. Mothers-to-be with untreated gum disease and cavities have a higher risk of complications, including premature labor and low birth weight babies. A lack of education significantly contributes to these increased risks.
Seeing your dentist before becoming pregnant is the right thing to do. It significantly increases your chance of having a happy, healthy baby. It gives you the opportunity to get all your dental problems treated. During pregnancy, other dental problems, possibly the result of hormonal changes, seem to occur. Pregnancy gingivitis, bleeding, sore and sensitive gums occur in about 50% of all pregnancies. Dental problems need to be resolved before you become pregnant.
Don’t count on being able to make an appointment, without complications, once you are pregnant. Exposure to even low doses of radiation or prior approval by your obstetrician may complicate making an appointment for dental treatment that shouldn’t have been delayed.
Once pregnant, protect against cavities with fluoride toothpaste and flossing. The toxins in your system from the infections of untreated cavities and gum disease can affect the health of your child. Be prepared, your unborn child will thank you for it. Remember, you’ll be smiling for two.