During pregnancy, hormonal changes may cause bleeding and puffy gums, which may deter mums-to-be from cleaning their teeth properly due to pain and inflammation. Poor oral hygiene can then make the problem progressively worse, so it’s important to have regular dental exams and cleans, especially if you are planning a pregnancy or have recently become pregnant. Here are some common pregnancy dental myths we hear about and why they aren’t true:
Pregnancy Dental Myth no. 1 – You cannot have dental treatment during pregnancy
We have seen some expecting mothers coming in with raging toothaches and were under the impression they had to wait for treatment until their baby was born. The truth is, most dental procedures can be safely performed during pregnancy. Women should not ignore severe dental pain as it may indicate infection. If not properly managed by a professional, the pain can cause stress on the mother and possibly on the baby.
If an infection is active, it can impact overall health. Elective treatment such as fillings, is best performed in the second trimester.
Pregnancy Dental Myth no. 2 – You cannot have dental x-rays
X-rays may be essential for diagnosing infection or trauma. According to the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency, intraoral dental x-rays are not contraindicated during pregnancy, however a leaded apron is recommended when the x-ray beam is directed downward.
Modern dental x-rays are very low dose and focus the x-ray beam very precisely.
Pregnancy Dental Myth no. 3 – You cannot use local anaesthetic
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has compiled a list of drugs used in the management of oral and dental conditions in pregnancy and breastfeeding. Anaesthetics and antibiotics listed under Category A are safe to take in pregnancy.
Pregnancy Dental Myth no. 4 – Some say you lose a tooth for each child born
There is a belief that unborn babies will utilise the calcium from their mother’s teeth to grow their bones. This isn’t true as babies will get their needed calcium from their mum’s bones and diet, not their mum’s teeth. If any teeth issues arise during or after pregnancy, that is likely due to other reasons.
There are more common pregnancy dental myths out there. If you are pregnant and have any concerns or questions about your oral health, our team at Pyramid Dental are always happy to help. Do not hesitate to call us on 4237 1810.