I’m pregnant. Do I need to take special care of my mouth?

If you are pregnant, you have special oral health needs.

  • Try to have a complete oral exam prior to or very early in your pregnancy. All needed dental work should be done before the pregnancy or between the fourth and sixth month of pregnancy, if treatment is needed. It is possible to have urgent treatment for a problem during pregnancy, but it can present risks to your baby. Treatments are most dangerous during the first three months. If you are in the last three months of pregnancy you may have treatment, but you may find the dental chair uncomfortable.  There is evidence that poor oral health may be linked to miscarriage.
  • If you haven't already, start practicing good oral hygiene and eating a healthy diet. Be complete in brushing and flossing your teeth daily. By doing this, you can control your risk for gum inflammation and disease.
  • Some pregnant women get gum disease -- a problem called pregnancy gingivitis -- which raises their chances for getting more serious gum disease. This condition can be caused both by poor oral hygiene and increased hormone levels during pregnancy. Having this problem can cause discomfort when you brush or floss, but it’s important to continue brushing and flossing regularly.
  • Pregnant women with gum diseases are much more likely to have premature babies of low birth weight.