If you're a soon-to-be-mother who starts to notice an increasing redness and soreness to her gums, you might have pregnancy gingivitis. Gingivitis refers to an inflammation of the gum tissue, which is the last thing you want to deal with when you're expecting. Here's our quick guide to the issue:
What Causes Pregnancy Gingivitis?
As you will already know, pregnancy causes all kinds of hormonal changes within your body. Most people know about the mood swings and odd hunger cravings, but few understand that those changes can also affect your oral health.
Gingivitis is caused when plaque adheres to the surfaces of your teeth. Essentially, the greater level of progesterone which occurs during pregnancy makes it easier for the bacteria which cause gingivitis to grow. It also makes existing gum disease worse.
When Does Pregnancy Gingivitis Occur?
The gum inflammation associated with gingivitis typically appears between month two and month eight of your pregnancy, though this can differ from woman to woman.
How Do I Spot Pregnancy Gingivitis?
Signs of pregnancy gingivitis change in severity as the condition develops. To begin with, gums may simply appear redder than normal, and feel tenderer during brushing and flossing. Eventually, your gums will begin to bleed during brushing, or even while eating. Severe swelling can also occur, pain levels will increase. Some women even suffer from bad breath as a result of pregnancy gingivitis.
What Problems are Associated with Pregnancy Gingivitis?
Gingivitis itself is non-destructive, and easily reversible. However, if you do not control it, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, a much more serious type of gum disease in which inflammation damages tissue, as well as the bones surrounding your teeth. This usually requires periodontal dental work, and frequently results in tooth loss.
There have also been several studies linking gum disease to premature birth. It has been suggested that the plaque on your teeth finds its way into the bloodstream, causing your body to produce prostaglandins, which are also a signal for the initiation of labour.
How Do I Prevent Pregnancy Gingivitis?
Since you suffer from an elevated risk of gingivitis, you will simply need to be more careful about your oral health. Brush twice a day, floss once a day, and use mouthwash after meals. You should also book regular dental checks at the dentist office to make sure that everything remains okay. You can also help mitigate discomfort by switching to a soft bristle toothbrush.
Contact a company like Mandurah Dental Surgery to learn more.