Oral Health During Pregnancy

The health of a mother’s mouth can impact the health of her baby, so it is especially important to pay attention to oral health during pregnancy. The hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy can increase the likelihood of developing gum disease, which can affect the health of the baby. A study released by the American Dental Association reported that pregnant women with gum disease have a greater risk of delivering preterm. The research found women with gum disease were over three times more likely to give birth prematurely than mothers-to-be with good oral health. They also had a one in four chance of giving birth before 35 weeks.

The increased likelihood for developing gum disease during pregnancy means mother-to-be should keep a high standard of oral care throughout the pregnancy and receive the proper treatment for gum disease to reduce the risk of preterm birth.

Receiving dental checkups during pregnancy is safe and recommended. By taking care of dental disease before the baby is born, you help avoid the common pitfall of passing bad bacteria from mom to baby through shared food or utensils. This means Dad should take care of any dental problems prior the birth of the baby as well. Parents who keep their mouths healthy are taking steps to keep their baby healthy, too.