When you are pregnant, many everyday activities are suddenly off limits in order to protect your growing baby from harm. Many pregnant women wonder if it is safe to go to the dentist during this time and if they should take any precautions. This guide will help you answer any questions you might have about dental care during pregnancy.
Should I visit my dentist during pregnancy?
Not only is it safe to visit your dentist during pregnancy, but we highly recommend it to maintain your oral health and the health of your growing baby. During pregnancy, your gums swell and may bleed due to the rise of various hormone levels. This can make it more difficult to remove food from your teeth which puts you at risk for tooth decay and gum disease. Therefore, we recommend continuing to see your dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings during pregnancy. Maintaining good oral health is also vital to the health of your baby as gum disease is correlated with pre-term birth.
Is it safe to have dental work done during pregnancy?
It is safe to have most dental work done while you’re expecting. Even extensive work such as tooth extractions or root canals are not considered dangerous. As long as your pregnancy is uncomplicated, you do not need approval from your obstetrician or midwife to resolve any dental issues. If you do have pregnancy complications, your dentist and healthcare provider will work together to make sure that you can safely resolve any dental problems that may arise.
What about dental X-rays?
Dental x-rays are considered safe during pregnancy. Dental x-rays use a very low level of radiation that does not pose a risk for your baby. Additionally, your dentist will use lead shields to further reduce the risk of exposure. If you are still concerned, you can delay x-rays until after the birth of your child. However, that may cause a delay in any additional procedures that need x-rays to be completed beforehand.
Are any dental procedures unsafe during pregnancy?
If you have an uncomplicated pregnancy, all necessary dental procedures are generally safe. However, it is best to delay any unnecessary procedures such as teeth whitening or other cosmetic treatments until after the birth of your baby.
What’s the safest time during pregnancy to schedule dental work?
Medical professionals consider the second trimester the safest time to undergo any procedures. The first trimester is the most sensitive time of the baby’s development. In the third trimester, it may be uncomfortable to lay back for long periods of time. However, if you have a dental emergency you can safely treat it at any point during your pregnancy. Simply let your dentist know that you are expecting, and he will take any necessary precautions and ensure you feel comfortable.