Routine dental exams every six months are important for your dental health, to keep your smile healthy and bright. In a routine dental exam, our Idaho Falls dentist and dental hygienists will inspect the overall health of your teeth, gums, and mouth. As part of the routine dental exam, we will consult with you on any recommended preventative or restorative treatments needed.
Special Note to Expectant Mothers
The condition of your teeth can affect your baby, and conversely, the baby can affect your teeth. For the health of you and your baby, it’s critical you follow these steps in maintaining good oral hygiene before, during, and after your pregnancy.
If you are planning to become pregnant, make a dental appointment before it happens. At the appointment, talk to your dentist about having your teeth cleaned, your gum tissue examined and any oral health problems taken care of. You’ll want to prevent any major dental treatments while you’re pregnant. These treatments are doable but certainly not ideal.
Communicate with Your Dentist
The first step to taking care of your teeth during pregnancy is making sure your dentist knows you’re pregnant. It’s important they know this, so they can take the proper precautions for treating you.
Another critical step is providing your dentist with the names of the medications you are taking, including any prenatal vitamins, so your dentist will not use any medications during dental work that could conflict with those drugs. While it is safe to receive dental care during your pregnancy, there are certain times you should avoid it.
Your first trimester and the second half of your third trimester are two such times that dental care should be avoided. These stages of your pregnancy are critical to your baby’s growth and development. The best time to seek care is during your second trimester. Dental procedures that are not an emergency should be postponed until after you deliver.
Something else to consider when pregnant is that your hormone levels increase during pregnancy, causing your gums to swell. Continuing to visit your dentist regularly can help prevent oral infections from developing in your mouth. This is important because certain infections, such as gum disease (also called periodontitis), have been connected to preterm labor.
Preterm labor can be caused by increased hormone levels and inflammatory molecules in the bloodstream as a result of inflammation. Because pregnant women have an increased risk for gum disease (inflamed gums), prevention is especially important.