Dental Care and Pregnancy
Expecting mothers are often concerned about the safety of having dental work done while they are pregnant. Fortunately, almost all dental procedures are completely safe to undergo during pregnancy. In fact, it is highly recommended that pregnant women continue to have regular dental checkups while pregnant. A woman’s hormone levels increase during pregnancy, causing bacteria to grow on teeth and gums more quickly. Because of this, pregnancy gingivitis can occur. Vomiting caused by morning sickness can increase tooth decay from the stomach acid in vomit.
Non-emergency procedures beyond routine dental checkups, like cavity fillings and crowns, are also safe during pregnancy. These procedures are recommended during the second trimester of pregnancy to ensure the comfort of the mother and baby.
Urgent procedures, such as a root canal or tooth extraction, are also safe. You should be comfortable during the procedure, to reduce stress on the baby, so any anesthesia and numbing administered should be enough to make you comfortable but no more than that. Penicillin, amoxicillin, and clindamycin are safe to take during pregnancy to prevent or treat infection following a procedure.
Dental X-rays can generally be postponed until after the pregnancy but are not discouraged if it is necessary. Your dentist can provide a lead apron to shield your thyroid and abdomen from the radiation.
Here are some more tips for dental care during pregnancy:
- Visit your dentist regularly
- Tell your dentist you are pregnant
- Postpone elective or cosmetic procedures until after the pregnancy
- Don’t cross your legs while in the dentist’s chair to promote proper circulation
- Bring a pillow, headphones, and your favorite music to keep you and the baby comfortable
Visit Aspen Dental for more advice on pregnancy and dental work!