Pregnancy Gingivitis and Oral Tumors
Pregnancy is a busy time for a woman’s body. The hormone changes and other changes that happen can be disorienting for women. There are so many little things to remember while you are pregnant that it can be hard to keep up with your own personal health as well. While you are busy watching what you eat and how much you exercise, you could be suffering from a common disease aggravated by pregnancy: gingivitis.
The hormonal changes that pregnancy causes are the reason that it is so common among pregnant women. Studies show a whopping 40% of all pregnant women will develop gingivitis at some point during their pregnancy. This condition is so common it has its own name, pregnancy gingivitis. If you already have gum disease, you are at an even higher risk of it getting worse or developing.The hormone progesterone is increased during pregnancy and as a result makes it easier for the bacteria that cause gingivitis to grow. It also makes the body more sensitive to the plaque that builds up on your teeth and causes it to have a more exaggerated response to the plaque, potentially damaging your gums and weakening them even further.
If you are pregnant, you should check your mouth for symptoms of potential gingivitis and tumors. Inflamed gums are the biggest tell or really red gums that bleed easily. Mouth tumors take the form of little lumps in your mouth that you can notice when you feel around in your mouth. They typically occur during the second trimester in about ten percent of pregnant women. These tumors will usually go away on their own, but if they don’t you can go to a dentist to have them removed surgically.
The best way prevent pregnancy gingivitis and tumors is to brush your teeth frequently and keep a vigilant eye out for the symptoms. Flossing and using mouthwash are also highly recommended.
The underlying problem isn’t the pregnancy hormones per se, it is the bacteria that are present and how they respond to these hormones. Regular dental cleanings assist in keeping these bacteria in check and allow dentists to monitor your oral health. Pregnancy is a time for mothers to focus in a special way on taking care of their needs. In the busyness of pregnancy, please don’t postpone your regular dental visits, they are an important part of your healthcare. At Apple Valley Dental, Dr. Byers and Dr. Sartelle have extensive experience in caring for patients suffering from pregnancy gingivitis and their needs. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with our staff.