What to Expect at the Dentist’s Office When You’re Expecting

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Congratulations on your growing family! Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of changes to your body when you're expecting. You probably knew to look out for symptoms like morning sickness and food cravings, but did you also know you need to keep an extra eye on your teeth and gums at this very special time? Thank goodness your health and dental insurance coverage will help keep you and your little one safe!

Dental Care in Pregnancy

It’s more important than ever to keep up your oral care routine in pregnancy. That means brushing twice and flossing at least once – every day. It also means keeping up with your regularly scheduled dental visits. The internet will give you many different answers about whether or not you should have routine X-rays during your examination. Don’t listen to the internet! Consult your doctor or midwife and your dentist to find out what’s best for you.

Common Complaints

Dentists have probably heard it all from their patients when they’re expecting, but some of the most common complaints during pregnancy are:

  • Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing. Caused by the crazy hormone fluctuations, pregnancy gingivitis is common. You should still continue your regular oral routine, but consider switching to a soft-bristled toothbrush. If you notice a little “pink in the sink” call your dentist. If left unchecked, pregnancy gingivitis can develop into periodontal disease, and that doesn’t clear up easily after delivery.
  • Expectant mothers often report increased tooth sensitivity, especially when eating hot or cold foods. It’s not your imagination, and though bothersome it will generally clear up on its own. While you’re at the dentist, ask about toothpastes that are specially formulated to address sensitivity.
  • Excess or decreased salivation are both known to happen. For the former, know that it often accompanies morning sickness and it’s your body’s way of protecting your teeth from excessive acid. Like morning sickness, it will probably pass in the second trimester. For the uncomfortable feeling of dry mouth that comes with decreased salvation, it can be an indicator of dehydration. Try upping your fluid intake.

Why you should keep that appointment

There is a myriad of appointments to keep up with when you’re expecting, and your dental appointments are no exception. If you’re finding it hard to motivate yourself to endure a cleaning when you’re already pretty uncomfortable, consider this: poor oral health in the mother has been linked to conditions like preterm delivery and low birth weight in the baby. It’s important to keep that appointment for more than your own well-being.

Changes to your insurance needs

Once you have welcomed your brand new baby, that’s one more member of your family to add to your health and dental insurance plan. They all tell you to sleep when the baby sleeps, but try to use one of those naps to contact your insurance carrier to add your new baby to your plan.


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