As trusted family dentists practicing in the Overland Park area, we have been asked a few questions by expecting mothers on more than one occasion. Just as mothers-to-be have questions regarding medical care and how their own habits or health may affect their babies, many also have questions regarding dental health. Below we’ve answered a few of the most pressing questions asked by expectant moms.
During my pregnancy, am I at an increased risk for dental or gum disease?
During pregnancy, certain hormones increase significantly, especially estrogen. Substantial hormone changes can make you more susceptible to gum disease (also referred to as “pregnancy gingivitis) because of changes in the blood vessels in gum tissue. Pregnancy tumors may develop later in pregnancy, however these are simply overgrowth in gum tissues that are non-cancerous. Your best bet for avoiding dental or gum disease and other problems during pregnancy is taking vigilant care of your teeth and gums.
Are prenatal fluoride supplements a good idea?
There really isn’t enough data to say that fluoride supplements will ensure that your child gets a jump on developing strong teeth to recommend taking them. Studies that have been conducted are not conclusive as to the effectiveness of fluoride supplements. That being said, there is one way to help your child avoid cavities later on which involves applying fluoride to teeth soon after they emerge.
How should I take care of my teeth during pregnancy?
Using fluoride-containing toothpaste approved by the ADA (American Dental Association), brush your teeth thoroughly two times each day. Floss daily, and use a mouth rinse specified to fight gingivitis and the build-up of plaque. Other than that, have your regular checkups and cleanings. Give our Overland Park dentists a call if you have pain, swollen or tender gums, or other issues that concern you.
Will my dental issues affect the calcium in my baby’s teeth?
Many expectant mothers believe that as their babies grow in the womb, calcium for the baby’s teeth is supplied by their own teeth. This is a myth; babies receive their nourishment including minerals such as calcium from your diet and the nutrients in foods you eat, not from your teeth. By eating a healthy diet containing plenty of fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products, you will help ensure your baby eventually has not only healthy teeth, but overall good health.
At Blue Valley Cosmetic & Family Dentistry, Drs. O’Neil and Rondeau are dedicated not only to beautiful, healthy smiles, but providing answers to our patients’ most pressing questions. Give our Overland Park family dentists a call today for exceptional dental care.