What You Didn’t Know About Gum Disease During Pregnancy

By : D. Santos

Pregnancy is a wonderful time and during this time many changes occur in preparation for the big day. Lifestyles often change from the moment you receive the great news.  We often start to eat healthier, make future plans and keep a healthy mind set.  With the many changes occurring during pregnancy, it is important to also maintain healthy teeth and gums especially when pregnancy gingivitis can occur.

Did you know that studies have shown that women with severe periodontal disease (bone loss) or gum disease are 7 times more subject to have premature delivery, pre-eclampsia (pregnancy hypertension) and deliver babies with low birth weights?  These problems can occur when bacteria from the gums enter a woman’s bloodstream and affect the levels of prostaglandin (a lipid that affects uterine contractions).  If the levels of prostaglandin increase, this can trigger premature labour.

As a preventative health care provider, your dental hygienist will want to monitor you closely to ensure that your oral health is being maintained.  When you are at risk for gestational diabetes or are diagnosed with this, it is of utmost importance to maintain optimal gum health because your risk of periodontal disease increases.

During pregnancy a woman’s gums may become more red, swollen, sensitive and irritated due to enhanced hormonal production, so when bacteria along the gum line (where the tooth meets the gums) is present, the gums become more prone to gum disease. This may deter some women from their regular oral hygiene routine due to the discomfort.  Not continuing with proper oral care will cause more sensitivity and irritation.  Maintaining oral health during pregnancy is important especially when pregnancy gingivitis is present.  Regular check-ups and hygiene appointments will ensure that you maintain optimal oral health for the duration of your pregnancy.

As your Mississauga Dentist and team at Credit River Dental Centre, not only will we maintain your oral health but also provide you with tips on how to maintain your baby’s oral health once your baby arrives.  Creating good habits with your baby from the start will help establish a good dental routine and help your baby maintain healthy teeth for life!