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The Link Between Pregnancy and Gum Health

If you are pregnant, you know that you have to keep track of many doctor’s appointments and medical concerns to ensure you and your baby stay healthy. You might not realize that pregnancy and oral health can go hand in hand as well, especially when it comes to your gums.

A study published in Oral Health & Preventative Dentistry suggests that pregnant dental patients who received treatment for gingivitis saw a lower risk of pre-term birth and an increase in birth weights. Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease, a common type of infection in the gum tissue. Though prevalent, gum disease can wreak havoc on your smile as well as the rest of your body without treatment.

Pregnant people may face a greater chance of contracting gum disease due to hormonal changes that affect their oral bacteria. But with help from your dentist, you can take action to identify, treat, and prevent gum disease during your pregnancy.

The Link Between Pregnancy and Gum Health

Signs of Gum Disease

Gum disease can be highly impactful to your life, so you likely want to know how you can tell if you contracted this infection. Early phases of gum disease, gingivitis, will present with irritation and inflammation in the gum tissue. You can experience bleeding, soreness, and swelling in your gums.

Sometimes, these symptoms can occur for acute reasons, like if you brush your teeth too harshly. But if they happen on a chronic basis or have no clear cause, it could be a key indicator that you have gum disease.

If gum disease advances, bacteria will eat away at your gums, teeth, and jawbone. The gums can begin to recede, which may make your teeth feel sensitive. Without support from healthy gums, the teeth might feel loose or wobbly, and you could suffer tooth loss.

Gum disease might also come with no recognizable symptoms. For this reason, you should attend routine check-ups at your dentist’s office so that they can perform a periodontal disease screening and diagnose the issue promptly.

Treatment Options for Patients with Gum Disease

If you have gum disease, your dentist can begin treating the infection right away. They will first want to perform a thorough cleaning of your teeth. They will target deep in the gum pockets using a therapy known as scaling and root planing.

The dentist might also give you an antibacterial rinse to use that can keep your oral bacteria balanced. With less excess bacteria, you can find relief from periodontal discomfort and inflammation as well as see a reduced risk of further oral infections.

How to Prevent Gum Disease

Since we all have oral bacteria, we could all potentially develop gum disease. Because of bodily changes in pregnancy, these individuals could face a greater risk of this oral infection. With proper care from your dentist, you can prevent contracting gum disease.

Practice good oral hygiene at home by brushing twice a day and flossing daily. Use proper techniques and consider using mouthwash to boost your oral cleanliness.

Attend regular dental cleanings as well to get rid of harmful plaque and tartar that your toothbrush cannot reach. Ensuring your smile stays free of residues that encourage bacterial spread and production can keep gum disease at bay.