During pregnancy dental problems are very common. Some women, while pregnant, complain of their gums changing color when they brush. They also complain of severe bleeding and swelling of the gums. This condition is referred to as pregnancy gingivitis. It can start as early as the second month of the pregnancy. This condition is brought on by primary changes in the body caused by the increase of certain hormones.
How do the hormones affect tooth decay?
The level of progesterone can rise to ten times higher than usual, and this can cause plaque formation to increase. This plaque causes gingivitis. A pregnant woman’s immunity works differently. This weakens the blood cells set to fight off bacteria, therefore worsening the gingivitis condition in the tooth. Another hormone that causes teeth problems during pregnancy is the estrogen hormone. It is released in large amounts and amplifies the reaction of the gum tissues towards the plaque.
If the condition is not treated, one could risk having pregnancy tumors, non-cancerous growths and inflammation. Some pregnancy tumors, also called pregnancy granulomas, are usually not serious and can be left alone. They are non-cancerous, and they shrivel after the birth of the baby by themselves. There are others that can be serious, and they will require medical attention. One can seek medical attention when the tumor becomes uncomfortable or creates discomfort while brushing, flossing or eating.
Another condition brought about by pregnancy is teeth erosion. Morning sickness, which is sometimes accompanied by severe vomiting, can adversely affect oral health by instigating erosion. This erosion is caused by more acid coming in contact with the teeth while vomiting. This acid causes the enamel on the teeth to erode. Dry mouth is another condition that affects the teeth while pregnant. Your body needs moisture to aid in transportation of blood cells. The blood cells help in fighting gum disease. Dry mouth can be taken care of by one drinking plenty of clean water, or chewing sugarless gum that helps in formation of saliva in the mouth.
How to prevent and take care of teeth during pregnancy
- Visit your dentist regularly
- Brush your teeth thoroughly at least twice a day
- Floss your teeth daily
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water
- Always get enough rest
- Maintain proper diet and daily vitamin intake
Dr. Peter Hazim is a renowned dentist who can teach you how to properly care for your teeth during pregnancy.
Please call us at (972) 727-5599. We are conveniently located at 105 N. Alma Drive, Suite 100 in Allen, Texas.