Dental News

Dental Care for Pregnant Women

December 13, 2013

Visiting the dentist in Upland CA can help pregnant woman maintain good oral health

dental care for pregnant womenMany women mistakenly believe that it is not safe to visit the dentist in Upland CA while pregnant. The truth is, it’s simply not possible to make this type of blanket statement. Some types of dental procedures may indeed pose risks to pregnant women due to stress, but dental cleanings may actually be vital in reducing risk of certain adverse pregnancy outcomes. Here are some do’s and don’ts to help expectant moms understand what types of dental care to get while pregnant.

Do Get Regular Dental Cleanings

Research has shown that pregnant women with periodontal disease are at increased risk for low birthweight or premature babies. Therefore, women need to take special care to practice proper oral hygiene at home and keep up with their professional dental cleanings as well. While a dental cleaning may be done at any time during pregnancy, the second trimester is probably the best time for a cleaning. A woman may be uncomfortable lying on her back during an appointment in her third trimester. And though X-rays have officially been deemed safe for pregnant women by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, there’s no reason to subject a fetus to an X-ray during the first trimester, when organs are developing, if the cleaning could be postponed to the second trimester with no risk to mother or child.

Don’t Ignore Symptoms of Gum Disease

Swollen gums due to changing hormonal levels are a common experience for pregnant women. Unfortunately, this swelling can create an increased risk for gum disease because swollen gums can trap more food debris. Between 60 and 75 percent of pregnant women have gum disease, so if you notice your gums are becoming overly tender, red, or swollen, you should consult your dentist in Upland CA for help diagnosing and eradicating the problem.

Do Get Emergency Treatment if Needed

If you experience a dental emergency while pregnant, do not hesitate to get dental treatment, especially if there is risk or evidence of infection. It doesn’t matter what trimester you are in—it is never a good idea for a pregnant woman to allow periodontal disease or infection to develop. Be sure to discuss your treatment with your dentist and make sure they will be using as little anesthesia as possible and only prescribing antibiotics that are approved for pregnant women.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Your OB-GYN

If you have any questions about visiting the dentist while pregnant, don’t be afraid to contact your OB-GYN. Your doctor and your dentist can work together to allay your fears and find the best course of action for you and your baby.