Can vomiting damage teeth?
Gastric reflux or the vomiting associated with morning sickness can coat your teeth with strong stomach acids. Repeated reflux and vomiting can erode the tooth enamel and increase the risk of decay. This can be avoided by:
- Rinsing your mouth thoroughly with water
- Followed by the use of a fluoridated mouth wash
- Do not brush for at least an hour after vomiting, as the coating of the stomach acids and vigorous action of the toothbrush can scratch the enamel and cause further damage to the tooth
How do I avoid retching while brushing?
Some women find it difficult to maintain good oral hygiene as brushing their teeth provokes retching. This can be avoided by:
- Using a toothbrush with a smaller head (brushes made for children)
- Distractions such as listening to music or focusing on your breathing
- Switching to another brand of toothpaste incase the taste provokes your gag reflex
Should x-rays be avoided during pregnancy?
As dentists rely on x-rays for diagnosis and to determine course of action for treatment, only x-rays that are needed for emergencies should be taken during pregnancy. Although the risks of x-rays are minimal, fetal organ development occurs in the first trimester and it is best to avoid all potential risks during this time. If dental x-rays are unavoidable, the dentist can take certain precautions such as use of lead aprons to minimize exposure. All routine x-rays should be postponed until after the birth of the baby.
What are the gum problems associated with pregnancy?
Pregnancy Gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) is commonly seen amongst pregnant women. It is most likely to occur in the second trimester and is characterized by tenderness and swelling of gums and bleeding during brushing and flossing. If untreated, gingivitis can lead to a more severe form of gum inflammation known as periodontitis.
What is a pregnancy tumour?
A pregnancy tumour is also known as a pyogenic granuloma. It occurs in 2 to 10 per cent of pregnant women. It is an inflammatory, non-cancerous growth which occurs on the gums due to minor local trauma or irritation of the gums. It usually occurs during the third month of pregnancy or later. The tumour can increase in size and it may or may not resolve on its own after delivery. (If it doesn't resolve itself, it can be removed) If a tumour is uncomfortable and interferes with chewing, brushing or other oral hygiene procedures, the dentist may decide to remove it.