What is Pregnancy Gingivitis?
Pregnancy gingivitis is known as an unpleasant condition caused by one of the natural consequences of the hormonal changes often found in pregnant women where the gum becomes red and swollen.
According to the American Academy of Periodontology, about 50% of women experience pregnancy gingivitis which often occurs between the second to eighth month of pregnancy.
Everyone has plague in varying amounts which can be removed by brushing, flossing and regular dental cleanings.
But the difference is that during pregnancy the bacterial content of the plague increases, resulting in more damaging bacteria that causes inflammation or swelling of gums known as pregnancy gingivitis.
Causes of Gingivitis
Too much dental plague, the bacterial that grows on your teeth, that causes pregnancy gingivitis irritates the gums, making them red, tender, swollen, sensitive, and bleed easily.
The hormonal changes during pregnancy also hinder the body's normal response to the bacteria which causes inflammation of gums. This makes it easier for plaque to build up on your teeth and makes you more susceptible to gingivitis.
The severity of the condition can range from mild inflammation with redness, to inflammation with bleeding, to even more severe conditions where periodontal surgery may be necessary.
How to Get Rid of Gingivitis
To prevent pregnancy gingivitis, it's important to maintain good oral hygiene habits - such as brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day - throughout pregnancy as well as regular dental visits.
The use of daily or periodic mouth rinse with warm salt water is highly recommended by doctors as mouth rinse is able to get in between teeth and reach places that brushes and dental floss cannot.
Salt water helps keep the bacteria count in your mouth low and further lower your risk of gingivitis during pregnancy.
Also sugarless dental gum helps in the fight against gingivitis as chewing gum increases the saliva in the mouth, helping to clean the mouth and add necessary vitamins back into the teeth.
Pregnancy gingivitis can be irritating and
even painful, however it is treatable and curable. The first step is to do
everything possible to prevent it from happening in the first place.
And for obvious reasons, with a regime of proper oral hygiene and diet, pregnancy gingivitis can be almost entirely avoided.