Here at The Super Dentists, we are passionate about helping individuals and families get the most out of their dental care. As San Diego’s leading dental care providers for kids and their parents, we’ve helped thousands of patients with their oral health needs. We believe in upholding a commitment to high-quality care that goes far beyond the dentist’s chair. That’s why we are proud to host community programs and seminars like The Mommy & Me Event, a seminar centered on the topics of pregnancy and dental care, free to all patients at The Super Dentists.
About The Mommy & Me Event
The Mommy & Me Event is a seminar series led by our dental professionals here at The Super Dentists that covers topics including oral health, fertility, pregnancy and infant well-being. When discussed under the larger banner of dental care, these topics are intimately connected in several ways. If you are a pregnant woman or a new mother, this event can help build a foundation for excellent oral health and overall well-being for you and your baby.
During The Mommy & Me Event, our dentists will lead a series of seminars and lectures answering the many questions pregnant mothers may have about dental care. We’ll also spend time helping expecting attendees build care plans around their needs. The speakers at The Mommy & Me Event have decades of experience in dental care for pregnant mothers, as well as other adults and kids, and are leaders in their fields. With their guidance and expertise, you’ll learn the ins and outs of proper oral care for yourself and the newest member of your family.
In addition to the many expert presentations scheduled, The Mommy & Me Event also includes activities for kids and complimentary swag bags for all attendees. The best part? The Mommy & me Event is free to attend for all our patients. Spots are going fast — so reserve yours by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org today! Below, we’ve put together a short guide on dental health and pregnancy. Read on to learn more and join us to explore these topics in depth at The Mommy & Me Event in Kearney Mesa on July 12th!
Dental Health and Pregnancy: Stats and Facts
Maintaining good oral health during pregnancy can be difficult. For many women, bodily changes, extra stressors and a host of other factors can push dental care to the back seat for those crucial 9 months (if not longer). However, it’s due to many of these same factors that maintaining good oral health during pregnancy is extra important. Let’s examine why.
The Deal with Disease and Tooth Decay
Periodontal disease and tooth decay (what dentist professionals call “dental caries”) are two of the most common diseases of the mouth. They are both bacterial infections, which means that having either one, or both, can affect your pregnancy or the health of your baby. Studies suggest that pregnant women with periodontal disease or tooth decay may be at higher risk for pregnancy complications such as early deliveries and low baby birth weights. A 1996 study found that women who gave birth early (before the 37th week of pregnancy) tended to have advanced periodontal (gum) disease. The same was true of women who had babies weighing less than 2,500 grams (about 5.5 pounds). These findings suggest a strong correlation between pregnancy difficulties and oral health.
Dental Caries: Protecting Your Infant from Bacterial Infection
In addition to the risks posed by poor oral health during pregnancy, there are several risks that a mother’s poor oral health can pose to an infant after birth. Bacterial infections such as periodontal disease and tooth decay can be transmitted externally between mothers and their babies. This typically occurs through:
- Sharing utensils
- Cleaning off a pacifier with your mouth
- An infant putting his or her hand in your mouth
If you do have a bacterial infection, it’s best to avoid the above activities until your infection is fully cured. However, there are steps you can take to keep your mouth free of infection in the first place. These include brushing and flossing regularly, using products (such as mints and chewing gum) that contain xylitol and scheduling regular checkups with your dentist. In the following sections, we discuss the importance of regular dental care for both pregnant women and new mothers.
Dental Care During Pregnancy: What You Need to Know
Visiting the dentist on a regular basis is a healthy choice no matter who you are. However, for many pregnant mothers, a dental check-up can seem like an unnecessary hassle with potentially major risks. Expecting mothers often avoid dental care due to the belief that exposure to chemicals used during dental treatment can harm the fetus. Below, we explore the legitimacy of this belief and provide a guide on when to schedule dental treatment during pregnancy.
What Happens to the Mouth During Pregnancy?
Before getting into the facts about dental care and any potential harm it may cause a fetus, it’s important to talk about what happens to the mouths of expecting mothers during pregnancy. Changes in the mouths of pregnant mothers are one of the biggest reasons why receiving regular dental care during pregnancy is crucial.
During pregnancy, the body’s immune system is compromised. Energy is devoted to the growing fetus, which leaves many of the body’s defenses working less effectively than they would normally. Hormonal changes in the body also increase a pregnant woman’s chance of developing “pregnancy gingivitis” and periodontal disease. Scheduling checkups and cleanings with a dentist can help your teeth and gums stay protected from the bacteria that your body may not be able to battle while you are pregnant. Learn when to schedule dental appointments during pregnancy below.
Keeping Your Baby Safe: When to Schedule Your Visit to the Dentist During Pregnancy
Due hormonal changes and immune system underperformance during pregnancy, scheduling dental care while pregnant is essential. However, for the safety of the fetus, it’s equally essential to schedule dental care at the appropriate time.
While the medical community is largely in agreement that dental care during pregnancy is safe, most dentists recommend scheduling dental appointments during the second trimester or early in the third trimester of pregnancy. During the first trimester of pregnancy, the fetus is in its most vulnerable developmental state and is more likely to be affected by the mother’s exposure to medicines and chemicals. On the other end of the pregnancy, the latter of half of the third trimester also presents potential problems. During this time, the uterus becomes sensitive to influences such as infection or general stress, both of which may occur due to dental treatment.
If you are pregnant and experiencing a dental emergency, you should not wait to receive treatment, regardless of trimester. The risks associated with not pursuing dental care in the invent of a dental emergency (major stress or infection) are far greater than any risks associated with dental care itself. If you are experiencing a dental emergency such as a broken tooth, an infection or another issue that causes pain, it’s important to schedule a visit to a dentist in your area as quickly as possible.
Dental Care During Pregnancy: Other Recommendations
Routine dental care and general medical care are extremely important for pregnant women and their babies. However, there are certain medical treatments and activities that pregnant women should avoid to ensure optimal fetus health and well-being for their own bodies.
It is generally recommended to avoid using medications as much as possible during pregnancy. Active chemicals in many medications can disrupt fetus development and impact overall fetus health. Of course, there are instances where medication is necessary. In these cases, pregnant women should always consult their doctors about proper medication usage and use the lowest dosage possible. If you need medication due to dental care, your dentist may consult with your obstetrician before prescribing antibiotics or pain medicine.
Avoid x-rays during pregnancy. Research suggests that overexposure to X-rays can have adverse developmental effects on fetuses. However, in some cases — such as major injuries or other dental emergencies — X-rays become necessary, even for pregnant women. In these cases, dentists will take extra measures to protect women and their babies. Should you need X-rays while pregnant, you will be covered in a lead apron before imaging begins and you will receive only the minimum number of X-rays necessary to help your dentist treat you.
Learn More and Register for The Mommy & Me Event at The Super Dentists!
Want to learn more about dental care and pregnancy? Get all the information you need at The Mommy & Me Event hosted by our award-winning dental professionals here at The Super Dentists. If you are patient at one of our many Southern California locations, this event is free to you! But hurry — space is limited and going fast! Reserve your spot by contacting us at email@example.com today!