Gingivitis in pregnancy. What to do?

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Marie-Ange Demory
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To the dentist with the baby bump? It might seem superfluous, but it really isn't. It is very important that pregnant women follow proper daily dental hygiene and that they undergo regular visits to the dentist. In fact, during the nine months, expectant mothers may face the risk of gingivitis in pregnancyCalled gravid gingivitis, caused by hormonal changes characteristic of pregnancy.



However, it is possible to reduce the risk that occurs theregingival inflammation through some important precautions, which correspond to frequent checks by the dentist, to a daily and correct cleaning of the teeth and to a healthy and balanced diet. Let us find out more about it.



Gingivitis, what is it

According to the Ministry of Health, the gingivitis it is the reversible inflammation of the superficial gingival tissues, caused by the accumulation of microbes in the oral biofilm of the gingival sulcus and the consequent immune response of the organism to this process.



In practice, the bacteria that are inside the mouth can proliferate if certain circumstances occur (such as stressful situations or in the case of diabetes, high blood pressure, smoking and poor oral hygiene) and, during gestation, when the hormonal changes characteristic of pregnancy occur. If the inflammation extends to deep tissues it can degenerate into periodontitis and for this reason it is always important to follow the necessary precautions for prevention and, if necessary, to intervene quickly.

Symptoms of gingivitis

Typically, i gingivitis symptoms are the following:



  • redness and edema of the gingival margin,
  • spontaneous bleeding (or following a minor trauma such as brushing),
  • alitosi,
  • gum discomfort.
Read also: Oral hygiene in the family

Because you can suffer from gingivitis during pregnancy

A woman undergoes complex physiological changes during pregnancy, which can affect oral health. The hormonal changes and immune response can cause gum inflammation.

Specifically, it is the increase in the hormone progesterone causing swelling, bleeding of the gums and any other symptoms of gingivitis. This happens because progesterone causes more blood to flow to the gums during pregnancy.

The risk of gingivitis gravidarum can manifest itself from the second to the eighth month of pregnancy.

How to intervene

If you have gum bleeding, dental pain, swelling, tooth mobility or other specific symptoms it is advisable to go to your dentist, who will prescribe, in relation to the overall clinical picture of the pregnancy, apossible therapy oral with antibiotics.

We remind you that gingivitis must be treated promptly, which can otherwise degenerate into periodontitis, extending to the supporting structures of the tooth. Periodontitis has been associated with complications in pregnancy and is a risk factor for pre-term births, preeclampsia, low birth weight, etc. For this reason taking care of your oral health on time is one fundamental caution. And simple and practical treatments are enough to prevent gingivitis and periodontitis.

How to prevent gingivitis

During the first trimester of pregnancy It is important to make a visit to the dentist, in order to identify any diagnosis and treatment of problems that need immediate treatment. It is important, at the same time, to protect the teeth and prevent potential inflammation of the gums by following a dailythorough dental hygiene and healthy nutrition. In particular, it is important to follow these guidelines:

  1. Carry out a proper cleaning of the teeth. It is necessary to brush the teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and to use dental floss every day, at least once, to deeply clean the spaces not reachable with the toothbrush. Antibacterial mouthwashes are helpful and complement manual cleaning.
  2. Lead a healthy and balanced diet. Especially during pregnancy it is advisable to follow an ad hoc diet based on fruit and vegetables. Instead, it is better to limit the consumption of fatty and high-sugar foods. It is also important to avoid carbonated and sugary drinks, choosing water or low-fat milk and, finally, it is better to prefer fruit to fruit juices.
  3. Schedule visits to the dentist. If you are pregnant and have not been to the dentist in the last six months or have experienced new symptoms, book a visit and a professional oral hygiene session now (dental cleaning). In particular, the period from the 14th to the 20th week of pregnancy is ideal for dental care, because all the baby's organs are already formed. Finally, it is useful to know that there are generally no contraindications to dental treatments during pregnancy and that, indeed, in the case of gum or tooth problems, it is very important to go to your dentist for appropriate therapies, even before childbirth.
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