Oral hygiene

FAQs about dental care during pregnancy

January 4d., 2020

Expecting a child is a special period in a woman’s life. At this point, not only the waiting experience but also self-care and proper health care must be important. More than one pregnant woman who visits a doctor hears that a visit to the dentist is also needed. We remind you that our dental clinics are ready to overcome all possible challenges. This time we answer the most frequently asked questions about dental care during pregnancy.

Why is dental care and oral health so important during pregnancy?
The main reason is that oral health can affect the health of both the expectant mother and the developing baby. During pregnancy, due to hormonal changes in the body, a unique transformation also takes place in the oral cavity, which increases the risk of tooth decay, an infection of the gums and periodontal disease. Therefore, it is very important to be examined prophylactically, pay close attention to personal oral hygiene.

Is oral care different before and during pregnancy?
Basically not. Pregnant women need to take care of their oral hygiene not only during this period but also throughout their lives. Tooth brushing should be done at least 2 times a day for at least 3-4 minutes, trying to clean each tooth surface. The brush should be soft: this reduces the risk of bleeding and inflammation of the gums. Every pregnant woman must have her teeth checked regularly and treatment should not be delayed if she has a toothache.

What are the most common diseases of the oral cavity during pregnancy?
The most common oral disease during pregnancy is an infection of the gums, also known as gingivitis. It occurs in about 60 percent pregnant women. Expectant mothers have increased levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, making the gums more sensitive to bacteria in the plaque. This causes inflammation. Another common oral disease in pregnant women is periodontitis. It can develop if gingivitis is not treated. Therefore, it is very important to see a dentist as soon as you notice the symptoms of gingivitis, such as swollen, painful gums, bleeding from them.

What can happen to a pregnant woman who has periodontitis and is not being treated?
Pregnant women with periodontal disease have a higher risk of giving birth to a lower birth weight baby or having a premature birth.

When to visit a dentist?
It is best to visit a dentist just before planning a pregnancy and take care of professional oral hygiene, cure tooth decay, damaged teeth or other oral diseases. During such a visit, the dentist will also advise on how to care for the teeth throughout the pregnancy so that they remain healthy and do not affect the health of the expectant mother or child. If it is not possible to visit the dentist before pregnancy, it is necessary to inform the dentist about the pregnancy during the consultation. This will allow the dentist to create a safe treatment plan, apply appropriate treatments and medications.

What if a woman starts having a toothache while expecting a child? Will the treatment not harm the child?
It is always better to complete the treatment before conception, but in such acute situations, dental procedures are also possible during pregnancy. However, the dental clinic should be visited during the second trimester of pregnancy (13-21weeks of pregnancy). This is the best time. During the first and third trimesters, only the necessary dental care is provided (after consultation with a gynecologist). All other major work that is not urgent is recommended to be postponed after the baby is born.

A woman who is expecting a baby does not want to go to the dentist. What is her risk?
Altered immune responses and delayed dental treatment during pregnancy in particular increase the risk of developing severe dental infections. All of this is detrimental to both mother and child. It is essential to diagnose potential problems in a timely manner and provide appropriate treatment from the outset.

How should you take care of your teeth?
It is important to follow a regular dental care regimen. Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a soft brush. Thoroughly clean the surface of the teeth where they touch the gums. Don’t forget to floss your teeth. Nausea and vomiting are a common problem in pregnant women. If vomiting occurs, rinse mouth with water or mouthwash as soon as possible. During pregnancy, it is important to eat healthy, balanced food, avoid sweets and high amounts of salt.

What is important after giving birth?
Oral hygiene should be given even more attention after childbirth and during breastfeeding. The body of a nursing woman consumes many important substances for milk production, so it is very important to pay attention to the diet. After giving birth, it is recommended to visit a dentist who will perform professional oral hygiene, assess the condition of the teeth and prescribe, if necessary, substances that will reduce tooth sensitivity and restore the required amount of calcium in the teeth.

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