Preparing for your baby

Having a baby is an exciting time in your life! Ready or not, there is so much to consider when starting a family, you want to do everything possible to give your little bundle of joy a happy, healthy life.

Taking care of yourself should be first on the to-do list! I had eight miscarriages before having my daughter taking care of myself was crucial. My body was pumped with so many drugs my hormones were all over the place. 

A healthy mouth is not always something we think about, let alone put at the top of our list when we are planning for a baby.

Your body will be going through a lot of changes, and that includes your mouth. When you are pregnant, an increase in hormones can exaggerate the way your gums react to plaque buildup. 

I could Not brush with toothpaste without gagging, so I did not use toothpaste in the morning. 

You may notice that your gums are puffy, sore, or bleed easily.   If you have puffy gums before you are pregnant, it will get much worse when you are pregnant and can have adverse effects on your baby.

Pregnancy gingivitis can happen as early as the first month of pregnancy. It is the plaque and lack of brushing the gums properly, not the hormones that lead to gingivitis. Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums, an early stage of gum disease caused by the buildup of plaque (a  sticky colorless, biofilm containing bacteria.

If you have gum disease,  it could affect your baby’s birth weight. Your baby can be smaller or be delivered sooner than anticipated.  

To prevent pregnancy gingivitis, brush twice a day, and floss once a day. I could not use toothpaste during my pregnancy without getting sick. So, I skipped the toothpaste and used a mouth rinse after brushing.

The health of your mouth is essential to your overall health, but it is equally vital to the future health of your baby.  Make your oral health care a part of your routine prenatal care.  

If your last dental visit was more than six months ago, and you are not sure if your gums were healthy before you found out you were pregnant, schedule an appointment soon. Tell the office you are pregnant and your due date. If you have cavities or gingivitis, they can provide the best care for you and your baby.

The ideal scenario would be seeing your Dentist to make sure your mouth is healthy before you get pregnant.  Knowing the health of your mouth can give you peace of mind that your mouth and gums will not be a factor in preterm delivery.

Visiting the dentists is safe during your pregnancy. Oral health care, including x-rays, pain medication, and local anesthetic, can be safe throughout pregnancy. Everyone is different, and family history plays a role, always check with you Dr. before any dental procedures. 

What and how you eat is just as important.  The food you consume and how to eat for two without overeating is part of the pregnancy journey.  Choose nutritious meals for you and your baby. A variety of fruit, veggies, and dairy stay away from the foods high in sugar. It is hard, but it will be worth it for both you and your baby.

 Did you know…

 Your baby’s teeth begin to develop between the third and sixth months of pregnancy.

To help the teeth develop, they need enough vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients Vitamins A, C, D, and calcium, to name a few.

The health of your mouth is just as important after you deliver your baby.

Maintaining a routine for yourself will also ensure you create a good routine for your infant and toddler. Our children mimic what we do, so we need to set a good example. 

Tell- show -do work well for me and my daughter, as well as the kids I see in my day to day practice. We are human, so we are not perfect creatures. We are going to miss brushing, not get all the plaque off, permit yourself to be human and do the best you can at the time. First, we need to know better to do better!

Brushing twice a day, morning and night, will set both you and your baby up for success and reduce your chances of dental disease and other diseases.

Always do what you are comfortable with and trust your gut instincts when It comes to your health and the health of your baby.

A Healthy Mouth- Healthy Mom- Healthy Baby.