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Dental Care for Pregnant Women & What to Expect During Each Trimester

While pregnancy is a joyous time, it can also present some new challenges when it comes to oral health. From hormonal changes to nausea and morning sickness, your mouth may experience discomfort that requires special attention from your dentist. However, with some modifications and precautions, safe and effective dental care is possible throughout each beautiful trimester. At Discovery Dental, we understand how critical it is for expectant mothers to maintain their oral hygiene for both maternal and fetal wellness.

First Trimester

During the initial 12 weeks, many women experience things like sore gums, bad breath, and sensitivity or bleeding when brushing. Increased levels of progesterone relaxation can cause gums to become swollen and tender. Be gentle brushing and flossing, avoiding stimulants like whitening trays. Sip water after brushing to rinse and spit instead of swallowing toothpaste. Gels or prescription rinses soothe sensitive teeth and gums. Most cleanings can be safely paused until your second trimester unless in an emergency. 

Notify us of any existing dental work needing monitoring or possible adjustment as swelling occurs. Be aware morning sickness may limit your toothpaste flavor choices or cause aversions to strong minty tastes. Rinse well or choose milder formulations. Eat small, frequent meals to prevent acid attacks on teeth from vomiting. We’re available to address urgent issues quickly while also discussing optional delaying of elective treatments. Overall, relax and take outstanding prenatal care – your body is undergoing exciting changes!

Second Trimester

As nausea typically subsides by weeks 14-16, safety allows for routine cleanings and X-rays if needed. We take precautions like using lead aprons to shield growing babies from any radiation. Non-emergency fillings, root canals, and extractions can also now commence. Be sure to tell us what you’re expecting, especially if work is on upper teeth near your thyroid, and don’t lift heavy instruments or position yourself prone. Sit upright with your waist slightly higher than your head when possible.

Staying on top of oral hygiene and catching early cavities is important – severe infection is unwise when compromised immune systems struggle more. However, small gravid gems like bleeding gums persisting for a few days needn’t panic – these issues may signal care, not always disease. Consult us if concerned, but otherwise, continue care with confidence balanced by relaxation. Enjoy reclaimed energy levels while the baby develops rapid bone growth in utero.

Third Trimester

As you enter the final stretch, increased blood flow can exacerbate swollen gums prone to gum disease if homecare lapses. We make additional accommodations by minimizing lengthy visits and using portable X-ray equipment reducing full-body exposure times. Splints or repositioning appliances preventing teeth grinding overnight especially help protect your dental work staying comfortable now and postpartum. 

Relaxation is key, so our goal remains efficient screenings and basic care ensuring your mouth neither stresses mother nor baby. Elective cleanings continue just informing us of contractions starting or any preterm labor concerns. Take excellent care and breathe – your diligence keeps healthy baby and mommy smiles radiating throughout labor and beyond! We look forward to meeting your little one and championing your whole family’s oral health journeys in the future.

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