Monday, January 23, 2012

Ya Gotta Floss

Brushing your teeth when pregnant is a no-brainer when you have that awful dry mouth. It's usually accompanied by bad breath and brushing should temporarily fix that too. When you are too nauseous to brush ( usually in the first trimester ), you at least have to floss and rinse. Flossing may cause your gums to bleed while pregnant due to the great increase in your blood supply. Brush with a soft toothbrush and floss gently. Bleeding does not excuse you from your oral hygiene routine.

We are told from the time that we have teeth that brushing keeps gums and teeth healthy. The dentist will often quiz you about how you brush and whether you floss. You've got to do it for you and now, the baby too.

When you neglect your teeth, or brush inadequately and floss not enough, bacteria builds up around the gum line. Give these "bugs" sufficient time and they will invade the tissues and enter the blood supply. They release toxins and waste that will erode the enamel on your teeth ( cavities ) and cause infections in the mouth called periodontal disease. These germs and their insidious by-products may cause inflammation anywhere in your body. And since they have taken up residence in your circulatory system, they may affect the baby too.

There is research linked to higher rates of preterm birth, preeclampsia and low birth weight babies associated with perioontal infections. So it is very important to visit the dentist at least every six months and it may be suggested that three months is optimal during pregnancy. You may opt out of x-ray, but if you have a real problem go ahead and do what's recommended and ask for a lead apron.

Now, go floss