If you are pregnant, or think you may be, it is important that you take extra special precautions when it comes to your oral health. Throughout the process, expecting parents are at significantly more elevated risk of certain diseases and problems. Your oral health is no exception.
Today, your Cerritos, CA dentist touches on some of the common risks to your smile that happen during the course of a pregnancy!
Your Body’s Changing
Throughout a pregnancy, the body will change immensely. Pevlic bones even realign to better accommodate birth, and that isn’t even close to being the end of it. Your immune system radically alters itself to both protect the child, as well as allow for the growth.
This is very helpful in pregnancy, as our immune system could otherwise destroy an embryo, as it would be viewed as an intruder with foreign DNA. But this also means that there are other areas of the body where the immune system has pulled back in order to focus on the task at hand.
Unfortunately, our mouths are a prime area for this to occur. And this also means that the risk of periodontal disease, or gum disease, skyrockets in the expecting. Gum disease is a serious condition in which bacterial infection has harmed the periodontal health.
The initial phase before this, is gingivitis, the inflammation and swelling of the gums. The tissue may also be tender or even bleed during brushing. This is a milder form of gum disease, and we see it most often in those with poor oral hygiene.
But the restructured immune system in those having a child means that the normal autoimmune response is lacking, and thus, you need to pay particular care of your smile during this time.
Do Not Forget Your Dentist
We understand that you have a lot going on right now, and maybe visiting a dentist seems like something that you could put off for a bit. At least until the baby arrives!
Unfortunately, this is not the case. Hormonal shifts in your body put your oral health at a much greater risk for issues. So now is a time for schedules, and planning. Dentists like to see their pregnant patients in the 2nd or 3rd trimester. Speak with your oral health professional about their preferred time, and heed their instructions!
And always be sure to follow a thorough and rigorous home oral health routine. Twice-daily brushing, coupled with flossing and a daily oral rinse, is imperative. Those nightly cravings might be hard to resist, and if so, just be sure to brush your teeth again afterward. Sleeping with food particles between your teeth gives them hours of uninterrupted time to grow and multiply!
ABOUT YOUR CERRITOS, CA, ORAL SURGEON:
Dr. Shawn Hofkes and the staff at Cerritos Dental Surgery are highly qualified to address complex issues, including those that require oral surgery to correct. To schedule an appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today by calling 562-584-4082. We proudly welcome patients of all ages from Cerritos, CA, and all surrounding communities, such as Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and more.