Pregnancy and Dental Health

As pregnancy brings about many changes in your body, the health of your teeth and gums can be affected. Dental problems, such as bleeding gums or cavities, can become worse during pregnancy and cause stress and discomfort.

Your dentist can help you minimize any dental problems during your pregnancy by showing you how to maintain good dental hygiene and nutrition. Your dentist can also provide you with relief for tooth pain or decay, perform routine cleanings and explain treatment needs. Some dental work can be performed safely during your pregnancy. Emergency treatment can be provided throughout pregnancy.

Common Oral and Dental Problems During Pregnancy

  • Pregnancy Gingivitis (Bleeding Gums): During pregnancy your gums are extremely sensitive to plaque. They may become red, swollen and painful, and they may bleed easily. It is important to continue to brush and floss to remove plaque.
  • Increased/Decreased Saliva: Hormonal changes and nausea may affect your saliva and also alter taste. Frequent water intake and rinsing will help.
  • Dental Decay: Tooth decay does not necessarily increase during pregnancy, but poor oral hygiene and diet changes can cause cavities. Increased appetite and cravings may lead you to snack more on foods that are high in sugar.

Some people believe that old saying “lose a tooth for every pregnancy.” This is not true. Taking proper care of your mouth by brushing, flossing and eating healthy foods while you are pregnant is your best defense against dental problems.

Helpful Tips

  • Brush thoroughly with fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day and after every meal and snack, if possible. Floss once a day.
  • Eat a balanced diet, limiting snacks to those that are healthy for you and your baby.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Schedule a visit with your dentist for a cleaning, an examination and to discuss your baby’s oral/dental health.

For More Information, Contact:

Dental Health Services – Annapolis 
J. Howard Beard Health Services Building 
3 Harry S. Truman Parkway 
Annapolis, Maryland 21401 
Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon and 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Dental Health Services – Glen Burnie 
North County Health Services Center 
791 Aquahart Road, 2nd Floor 
Glen Burnie, Maryland 21061 
Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon and 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.