Mothers around the world are celebrated in the month of May each year. This May, to commemorate Mother’s Day, Specialist Dental Group would like to share some crucial dental information for all mothers and those planning to be mothers – as a toast to all of us who love the most important women in our lives.
The old saying that mothers will “lose a tooth for each child” is a fable. Like all fables, this one conveys a cautionary tale; A mother-to-be will experience hormonal changes due to the fluctuating estrogen and progesterone hormones in her body. First-time mothers, in particular, may neglect or over-look their oral health as they are busy planning for the arrival of the baby.
It is important for women to go for routine dental visits, even more so when they are planning to start a family. Dentists can usually detect any underlying problems such as swollen or bleeding gums, gingivitis or accumulation of plaque and calculus and be able to treat any of these conditions to ensure that a woman is at her pre-natal best where her oral health is concerned.
With increased levels of estrogen and progesterone hormones, the gum tissues of pregnant women will react differently, to plaque bacteria. Pregnancy gingivitis usually occurs when there is an accumulation of plaque and calculus, prior to pregnancy.
Recent studies show that the absence of professional oral maintenance for expectant mothers may cause some bacteria from the infection in the mouth to be transferred to the baby unknowingly.
Going for regular dental check-ups will ensure a healthy and happy pregnancy for both mother and baby as hormones associated with pregnancy can cause the gum tissue to react to irritants such as plaque and tartar.
Having a balanced nutritious diet and monitoring the frequency of snacking between meals and avoiding sugary or acidic food decreases the risk of developing cavities. Instead, mothers can choose healthier alternatives such as nuts, fruits or vegetables to curb the pregnancy cravings.
Some mothers experience morning sickness and the acidity from the frequent vomiting can eat away at the enamel, causing cavities. To combat the enamel erosion, pregnant women can rinse their mouth with water (optional: add a teaspoon of baking soda) and wait 30 minutes before brushing their teeth.
Many pregnant women are not seeing their dentists for regular check-ups due to misinformation, fear or plain neglect. However, do remember that dentists are trained to take care of your oral health before and during pregnancy to ensure everything is smooth while you focus on the growth of your baby.
For more information on different dental issues affecting women during different stages of theirlife, read our article on women and gum health or send us your enquiries. For further information on any dental related topics, visit our website or click to make an appointment for your next dental checkup.