Pregnancy can affect nearly every aspect of your life and that includes your dental health. It’s especially important to take care of your mouth and teeth during your pregnancy and to have an understanding of the common dental conditions that can occur during your pregnancy.
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If you’re planning on becoming pregnant it’s a good idea to visit with Dr. Jeffrey Fortna beforehand so you address any dental issues that may be affected – or possibly complicated – by your pregnancy.
If you’ve recently discovered you are pregnant, call Mainstream Dental and make an appointment with Dr. Fortna as soon as possible. When you make your appointment be sure to relay to us how far along you are in your pregnancy and discuss any medical conditions you may have. Also let us know if you’re considered a high-risk pregnancy. Dr. Fortna will meet with you to assess your dental health and to map out a plan during the rest of your pregnancy. Whenever possible you should schedule a cleaning in your first trimester. Another visit is recommended in the second trimester for a cleaning, and to monitor any changes that may be occurring in your oral health. An appointment may also be necessary early in the third trimester depending on your own unique situation. These third trimester appointments with Dr. Fortna are typically as brief as possible.
Common Dental Conditions
There are certain dental conditions that typically occur during pregnancy. The first is pregnancy gingivitis— a mild form of gum disease that causes gums to be red, tender and sore. If pregnancy gingivitis is let untreated, it can lead to more serious gum disease. Dr. Fortna may recommend frequent cleanings to help control your gingivitis. Brush your teeth twice a day, floss once a day, and be sure to eat a balanced diet to help reduce your chance for gingivitis. Some dental insurance plans may cover additional cleanings during pregnancy so be certain to contact your insurance company to see if they provide this benefit.
Many women experience morning sickness during pregnancy. Along with the nausea that comes with morning sickness, additional acid is often present in your mouth. If this acid is left in your mouth it can cause enamel erosion. Be certain you are rinsing your mouth out with water or mouthwash to try and keep the acid level under control. If morning sickness is preventing you from brushing your teeth, try changing to a bland-tasting toothpaste during pregnancy or ask Dr. Fortna for recommendations.
Some pregnant women may also develop pregnancy tumors. The tumors are inflammatory, non-cancerous growths that develop when swollen gums become irritated. In many cases these tumors will usually shrink on their own after the baby’s birth. However, some pregnant women find them uncomfortable and they can interfere with chewing, brushing or other oral hygiene procedures. In these cases it may be best to request Dr. Fortna removes your pregnancy tumor.
If you notice any changes in your mouth during your pregnancy, please contact Mainstream Dental as soon as possible. We’re always here to help you have a comfortable and healthy pregnancy! If you experienced gum problems during your pregnancy, be sure to contact us again after your delivery so Dr. Fortna can examine your mouth and evaluate your periodontal health.
The content above is applicable for many of our Mainstream Dental patients who are expecting or planning a pregnancy. Your individual circumstances may alter the suggestions or instructions being provided. Please contact Dr. Jeffrey Fortna for an appointment to discuss your unique dental needs.