Pregnancy and Dental Care

We are often asked, "should I still go to the dentist while I'm pregnant?"

The answer is … absolutely!

Oral health is very important during pregnancy. In fact, recent studies have shown there may be a link between low birth weight babies and maternal gingivitis or gum disease.

Good oral hygiene that includes regular brushing and flossing as well as proper nutrition are critical to your oral health. Regular preventive care at your dentist is likewise important to detect any problems early so that they don't pose a risk to the baby.

Some changes you may notice in your oral health during pregnancy include red or swollen gums, gums that bleed easily or even growths on the gum tissues. These are reactions of the gum tissue to plaque that are exaggerated during pregnancy due to the changes in hormone levels. Increased plaque control methods at home and regular professional cleanings should help to alleviate these symptoms.

If possible, it is important to see your dentist prior to becoming pregnant. That way, any necessary treatment can be performed and problems during pregnancy can be avoided.

Most routine dental services can still be performed during pregnancy. More complex treatment is usually delayed until after the baby is born. Dental Emergencies can be treated at any time during pregnancy. Dental infections can pose a risk to the fetus and should be addressed as soon as possible. Dental anesthetics can be given safely during pregnancy when used properly. As always, for peace of mind, you should consult with your obstetrician if you have concerns about having dental treatment at this time.