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Oral Health in Pregnancy

Updated: Apr 16, 2022

During pregnancy your body will experience many changes, some expected and some not so much. There are quite a few myths out there about pregnancy and it's effects on your oral health, whilst they may not all be entirely factual, it's important to know ways in which pregnancy can impact the mouth and talk about things to expect that may have otherwise been ignored, or embarrassing to ask about. I've caught up with Midwife Pip to talk all things healthy mouths during pregnancy, what’s normal and our top tips for a positive experience with pregnancy and your mouth.

Oral Health in Pregnancy

Should my Gums Bleed in Pregnancy?

From the early stages of pregnancy your body produces higher level of many hormones, one being progesterone. Progesterone is a hormone which stimulates the blood vessels that supply the lining of the uterus, this allows your growing baby to get the nutrients it needs. It also allows the uterus to grow to accommodate your growing baby by inhibiting smooth muscle fibre contraction and it helps to prevent lactation until late pregnancy or after birth. However, it also causes your blood vessels to retain more fluid, and in turn increases their size, meaning they become fuller and leakier, and also sit closer to the gum surface. All of this means your gums are likely to bleed easier if you catch them with floss or a firm toothbrush head.

  • Rosie says: bleeding gums is common during pregnancy and can often be scary if unexpected, the most important thing is that you don’t let the bleeding stop you from maintaining a healthy mouth. up your home care routine with daily flossing, and switch to a soft head toothbrush, make sure you are brushing for at least two minutes twice daily, don’t let the site of blood put you off, top oral hygiene is key for prevention.

  • Pip says: We hear so much about all the changes that occur to women’s bodies during pregnancy, but we do not often consider the changes that occur in our mouths. During pregnancy it is really important to attend your routine dental health check-ups and given that pregnant women and women who have had a baby in the last 12 months get free NHS dental treatment there really is no reason not to.

Pregnancy Gingivitis