A woman’s pregnancy is a wonderful but fragile time with many types of precautions to be considered. Expecting mothers fall into a risk-sensitive state to protect their developing child. There are many things they begin to avoid, including certain types of medical procedures and medicines. You may be wondering if dental work, such as fillings should be put on hold until after the expecting mother gives birth. To answer this question, expecting mothers should definitely attend their scheduled dental appointments and actually be even more attentive to their oral health.
The Importance of Good Oral Health During Pregnancy
Keeping sustainable oral health is critical during pregnancy. Good oral health can heavily prevent the spread of oral diseases such as gum disease to an expecting mother’s unborn child. The consequences of avoiding necessary dental treatment during one’s pregnancy will be much more detrimental in the long run for the mother in terms of both health and expenses. Your dentist will be able to help you with any needs you have, including oral-related pregnancy issues.
Are There Any Pregnancy-Related Dental Issues That Can Occur?
The majority of women will not face pregnancy-related dental issues, however, it is possible that some conditions could develop or be made worse. Here are some complications that can occur:
- Pregnancy Gingivitis: Due to the hormonal changes that happen in a pregnant women’s body, gums can become inflamed and tender to the point of possible bleeding. This is known as pregnancy gingivitis. It is important to get checked if signs of this condition are occurring, as it could lead to more serious issues such as gum disease.
- Tooth Decay: Statistically pregnant women are more likely to experience tooth decay over the duration of their pregnancy. Multiple factors are involved in this, including the amount of eating occurring, acid from morning sickness, and exhaustion among other things.
To avoid these problems, it is best to try your best to keep a simple and effective daily routine of brushing twice and flossing. Be sure to contact your local dentist if any problems seem to arise.
Can Pregnant Mothers Get Fillings? What About Anesthesia and X-Rays?
Fillings can be given to pregnant mothers as long as non-mercury fillings are used. According to The Mayo Clinic, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends that non-mercury fillings be used, due to the possible harmful effects of mercury exposure, especially for the unborn child. The best time for a filling or any other dental procedure is within a woman’s 2nd trimester.
Local anesthesia and numbing is actually safe for both the mother and baby to receive during a dental operation. This may be needed during operations such as fillings, root canals, and extractions. Dental X-rays are not dangerous during pregnancy. X-rays are safe, especially since the expectant mother will be covered with a lead apron when they are taken.
What Type of Dental Work Should Be Avoided During Pregnancy?
We recommend that any unnecessary cosmetic dentistry such as teeth whitening be held off for expecting mothers until after their child is born. To reduce risks, dental work should be limited to what is actually needed to relieve pain or discomfort and maintain a healthy smile. Ask your dentist if you are unsure if a procedure is necessary or not.
Contact Capozzi Dental with any questions or concerns you may have, our staff will be happy to answer!