Dental advice during Pregnancy
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It's all the mothers fault!
A recent study reported in the Journal of Dental Reseach* looked at the mothers with high amounts of bacteria (mutans streptococci and lactobacilli) when they where pregnant to 2 years after their child was born.
Not surprisingly these mother's had children with increased early childhood decay.
Keep your teeth really clean for your child's sake!
(*B.W. Chaffee, S.A. Gansky, J.A. Weintraub, J.D.B. Featherstone, and F.J. Ramos-Gomez
Maternal Oral Bacterial Levels Predict Early Childhood Caries DevelopmentJ DENT RES March 2014 93: 238-244)
Pre Pregnancy Advice
Pregnancy is an important time to refocus and ensure you have good dental habits. Don't be fooled by the Old Wives' tale about losing a tooth with each pregnancy!
Pre Pregnancy Advice
Have a dental examination BEFORE you plan to get pregnant.
- X-rays (radiographs) should be avoided during pregnancy.
- Healthy gums before pregnancy can minimise gum problems during pregnancy.
- Lying on your back when you're pregnant can be uncomfortable making lengthy dental treatment difficult. Nausea and gagging may also be a problem while pregnant.
- Make sure you are caries free: Some studies have shown that the bacteria that causes decay is passed from the mother to the baby - so eliminating decay in your mouth may help protect your baby.
- Cravings:Try healthy, non-sweet snacks. The more frequently you have snack, particularly with sweet foods, the more likely you are to get decay.
- Morning sickness: If you vomit frequently during pregnancy it's important to simply rinse your mouth with water afterwards. Brushing your teeth immediately after vomiting can cause your teeth to "wear" away. That's because stomach acids soften the tooth surface thus making brushing more abrasive.
- Gagging : You may find that you need to change the taste of your toothpaste. Cleaning your back teeth while breathing very slowly may also help.
- Bleeding gums: Hormonal changes can cause gum sensitivity but it's important to let your dentist check your gums and offer advice on minimising problems. Gum problems due to pregnancy will resolve after childbirth.
- Calcium isn't lost from your teeth because your baby is developing. Extra calcium and phosphorous are needed during pregnancy so it important that your diet is adequate. Dairy products, cheese and yoghurt are good sources of these essential minerals.
- Fluoride is found in most toothpaste and in foods originating in areas with fluoridated water. Talk to your dentist before you take fluoride supplements.
Tell your dentist or any medical practitioner if you suspect you're pregnant. Certain medicines can affect a baby's developing teeth.
X-rays may not be recommended during pregnancy. Special care will be taken by your health practitioner if it is essential to have x-rays.