Pregnancy causes hormonal changes that increase your risk for establishing oral illness like gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) and periodontitis (gum disease). As an outcome of varying hormonal agent levels, 40% of women will develop gingivitis at some point during their pregnancy– a condition called pregnancy gingivitis.
Is It Normal for My Gums to Bleed During Pregnancy?
About half of pregnant women have swollen, red, tender gums that bleed when flossed or brushed. The cause is a moderate type of gum disease called pregnancy gingivitis. Your gums are more likely to end up being inflamed during pregnancy in part because of hormonal changes that make them more sensitive to the bacteria in plaque.
Pregnancy Gingivitis: How to Recognize?
You may likewise establish a benign blemish on your gums that bleeds when you brush. This relatively rare blemish is called a pregnancy tumor or pyogenic granuloma– scary names for something that’s safe and typically painless. Pregnancy growths can actually appear anywhere on your body during pregnancy, but they show up most often in the mouth.
A pregnancy tumor can grow to as much as three-quarters of an inch in size and is most likely to appear in an area where you have gingivitis. Generally, it disappears after you have your baby, however if it does not, you’ll need to have it gotten rid of. If it causes pain, disrupts chewing or brushing, or starts to bleed excessively, you can have it eliminated while you’re pregnant.
Can Pregnancy Gingivitis Affect My Pregnancy?
This mild type of gum disease is unlikely to cause you any damage, specifically if you practice great dental health. You may have heard that gum disease can cause you to go into preterm labor. However that’s only a potential risk for women with severe gum disease.
Many research studies show a link between severe gum disease and preterm birth and low birth weight. And some research recommends an association with preeclampsia, too. Nevertheless, other studies show no relationship between gum disease and these severe complications.
How Should I Take Care of My Teeth and Gums During Pregnancy?
Practice good oral health and get routine preventive dental care.
- Brush completely however carefully at least twice a day (after every meal if possible), using a soft-bristled brush and tooth paste with fluoride.
- Floss daily.
- Consider utilizing a fluoridated, alcohol-free mouth rinse every day.
- Get routine preventive dental care. Your dental expert or periodontist can remove plaque and tartar that brushing cannot. If you have not seen a dental professional just recently, schedule a check out now for an extensive cleaning and checkup. Make certain to let the dental professional know that you’re pregnant and how far along you are. If it’s early enough in your pregnancy, you’ll most likely want to be seen again before your baby is born– or even more often if you currently have gum disease, since pregnancy will likely make the problem worse.
- Don’t put off getting treatment for dental problems. If needed, anesthetics such as Novocain are safe throughout pregnancy. And if antibiotics are required, pregnancy-safe drugs are readily available.
When Should I Call the Dental Expert?
In addition to regular examinations, schedule a dental appointment right now if you have any of the following:
- A toothache
- Gums that bleed regularly and hurt
- Other signs of gum disease, like swollen, tender gums; declining gums; persistent bad breath; or loosening up teeth
- Developments in your mouth, even if they’re not painful or causing any other symptoms