While pregnancy is an exciting period for most women, it can come with a lot of challenges. Pregnant women experience numerous changes in their bodies including their mouth due to increase in hormone levels. This leaves their mouths vulnerable to plaque, bacteria, dry mouth, teeth erosion and other dental problems.
In this article, we will focus on some effective tips that will guide you on how to care for your oral health during pregnancy.
It is very vital to eat healthier and drink water regularly during pregnancy. Your diet should include healthy foods such as vegetables, fruits, fish, chicken eggs, dairy products, whole-grain products and nuts. Moreover, experts recommend pregnant women taking 400 milligrams of folic acid and high-folate foods every day.
Also, avoid foods that contain a lot of sugar. However, if you snack, be sure to do so in moderation. Do not forget to drink water regularly and avoid flavoured drinks as they are likely to cause tooth decay.
Visiting your dentist for regular checkups is another way to maintain good oral health throughout your pregnancy. In fact, it is recommendable to get your mouth checked during the first three months of your pregnancy. Pregnancies cause hormonal changes that can put you at risk of periodontal disease, hence, regular periodontal examinations are necessary.
Brush your teeth thoroughly at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to get rid of plaque. Also, floss at least once a day to remove debris that toothbrush cannot reach. Replace your toothbrush more frequently in order to avoid problems that come with bacteria build-up.
A dentist near you may recommend an antimicrobial mouth rinse to help control plaque and gingivitis.
Morning sickness is common during pregnancy. When in this state, many women suffer from acid reflex or heartburn, and this can cause tooth erosion. The best way to maintain your oral health after morning sickness is rinsing your mouth with a teaspoon of baking soda and water.
Baking soda will help neutralize the acid in your stomach, so it does not attack your teeth. After spitting, chew a sugar free gum to help stimulate saliva and wash away the acid. Wait at least 30 minutes before brushing to avoid destroying the enamel surface.
It is important to maintain healthy teeth and gums before and after pregnancy. This way, you will be protecting not only your health but also that of your unborn baby.