How to Care for Teeth and Gums During Pregnancy

Three Methods:Maintaining Basic Dental Hygiene While PregnantManaging Dental Hygiene with Morning SicknessGoing to the Dentist

Taking care of your teeth during pregnancy is incredibly important for your health and your baby's health. By maintaining basic dental hygiene, going to the dentist, and taking steps to care for gums and teeth during morning sickness, you can ensure that your gums and teeth are healthy, and protect your health and your baby's health.

Method 1
Maintaining Basic Dental Hygiene While Pregnant

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    Brush twice daily during pregnancy. This is especially important during pregnancy. You’re more susceptible to plaque during pregnancy because your body doesn’t fight it off as well; your immunity drops, and your hormonal changes can affect your entire barrier of tooth protection. If you had good dental hygiene before pregnancy, simply maintain it. If you weren’t brushing as often as you should, try getting to brushing twice daily during pregnancy.[1]
    • If you find that your toothbrush is irritating your gums, try using a soft bristle toothbrush.[2]
    • If you're experiencing the gag reflex due to morning sickness, get a smaller toothbrush (a kid's toothbrush is great for this).[3]
  2. 2
    Floss at least once a day during pregnancy. As you’re more susceptible to gum disease and inflammation during pregnancy don’t skimp on the flossing. Flossing is important to protect against periodontal disease and to remove plaque. If you are sensitive to strong tastes, use a flavorless floss.[4]
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    Avoid sugary foods to keep your teeth and baby healthy. Not only will this promote the health of your baby, but it will also kelp you maintain healthy teeth during pregnancy. Sugary foods lead to the build up of plaque which can cause cavities and hurt your gum health. With the sensitivity of gums during pregnancy, this is particularly important.[5]
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    Get enough calcium. Calcium is necessary for healthy teeth and a healthy pregnancy.[6] The daily amount of calcium you need while pregnant and breastfeeding is 1200mg. You can get this through food sources, including dairy, broccoli, spinach, and beans.[7]
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    Understand how hormonal changes impact your teeth and gums. This is the reason why it’s important to take good care of your teeth and gums when you are pregnant. These hormonal changes increase the risk of developing gum disease because it makes gums more sensitive, which makes it easier for gingivitis to develop, and this can affect the health of the unborn baby.[8]
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    Check for bleeding gums. You may have "pregnancy gingivitis," because you are more susceptible to gum disease during pregnancy. If you do have bleeding gums, you may need to see a dentist for treatment.[9]
    • You may experience a slight pain or burning in your gums, and your teeth may feel loose as a secondary effect of the increased inflammation.

Method 2
Managing Dental Hygiene with Morning Sickness

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    Use bland toothpastes. Sometimes morning sickness can cause taste sensitivity during pregnancy. If you find yourself being sensitive to your normal toothpaste, try a blander one.[10] Ask your dentist for recommendations for the best bland toothpastes during pregnancy.[11]
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    Don’t brush immediately after morning sickness. Because of the acidity in stomach acid, it is really important to delay brushing teeth immediately after vomiting. The stomach acid is really damaging to your enamel. Rather wait and brush your teeth at your normal times. [12]
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    Rinse with baking soda and water after morning sickness. If you vomit and you want to wash out your mouth, use baking soda and water, as this won’t damage the enamel. It will also help get rid of the taste of vomit.[13] Also, drinking a combination of baking soda and water can help ease the nausea.[14]
    • If you don't like the taste of baking soda, you can also use mouthwash.
  4. 4
    Use a tongue cleaner to remove acid after morning sickness. This will help your mouth feel cleaner and will help remove acid from your mouth.[15] If you have a particularly sensitive gag reflex, you may want to wait until the nausea subsides before scraping the back of your tongue.[16]

Method 3
Going to the Dentist

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    Tell your dentist you’re pregnant. Because the dentist will want to add extra protection during x-rays, it is important to tell your dentist about being pregnant. They may also want to change your treatment plan, especially if you have any procedures scheduled that aren’t necessary before the baby’s due.[17]
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    Let your dentist know what medications and prenatal supplements you are taking. As with any doctor, it’s especially important to let them know what you are taking during pregnancy so as avoid any negative interactions that may harm the baby’s development. Make sure you do this before any procedures are undertaken or medications are prescribed.[18]
  3. 3
    Get normal preventative dental care during your pregnancy. Getting your regular check up at the dentist is very important when you’re pregnant as you are at risk of worsened gingivitis and periodontal disease. When you’re at your checkup, make sure you let your hygienist or dentist know about any changes in your gums since becoming pregnant.[19]
  4. 4
    Get any urgent dental procedures done. It is safe to get most urgent dental procedures such as root canals during pregnancy. They will likely use less anesthesia, but will still want to make you comfortable, so don’t hesitate to tell them if you are uncomfortable during a procedure.[20]
    • Any tooth pain or infection should be handled as soon as possible, because of the risk of bacteria spreading and endangering your pregnancy.
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    Put off any elective procedures until after the pregnancy. Because you don’t want to take any unnecessary risks, avoid cosmetic dental procedures until after the pregnancy.[21] Because risks of elective dental procedures during pregnancy are unknown, they are best avoided.[22]
  6. 6
    Get treatment for periodontal disease if you have it. During pregnancy, your mouth is more susceptible to gum disease and inflammation. Root planing and scaling can help treat periodontal disease. This is a procedure done by the dentist and is safe for pregnant women.[23]


  • Have routine checkups.
  • Beginning with the third month of pregnancy, the risk of influencing the baby through dental procedures lowers, but you should still take extreme caution.


  • This article is not meant to replace the advice of a qualified dentist or doctor.

Sources and Citations

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Categories: Teeth and Mouth