Too many people believe that cavities and bleeding gums are inevitable, possibly normal conditions during pregnancy. These dental problems can create unexpected and devastating health consequences for mother and baby, something many families do not understand. Gum health is a major concern during pregnancy since this infection can precipitate a cascade of reactions that could unfortunately end with death or premature birth of the baby.
Cavities and gum disease are entirely preventable and simple changes will help anyone avoid wrong toothpaste choices or drinks that damage oral health and promote cavities, gum disease and tooth loss.
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Alterations in body chemistry make the mouth more acidic during pregnancy. Mouth dryness compounds the problems ofnausea, acid reflux and an exaggerated immune response. Xylitol will stop plaque forming on teeth and also help strengthen them. Xylitol helps to alkalize the mouth and the mouth rinse system that I recommend will put teeth in great shape before and during pregnancy to prevent cavities or gum disease.
Avoid all use of bleaching products and baking soda – even as an ingredient in pastes or rinses. These products can damage the natural protein layer that protects healthy teeth. Loss of this layer puts anyone’s teeth at risk but during pregnancy may promote multiple cavities and serious gum recession. Long periods of acidity or dry mouth also harm this protective layer. A good diet, alkaline waters, Probiotics, fermented foods and whole milk products help maintain oral health and offer protection to teeth.
There is a direct relationship between a mother having gum disease and her risk for pre-term birth. Plaque bacteria trigger gum inflammation and this response may be exaggerated during pregnancy. Gum infection signals a problem to the body, which reacts by sending cells and additional blood to the site of trouble. Plaque bacteria will trigger this reaction and in certain cases plaque bacteria have been identified as having travelled in the blood to lodge in the umbilical cord.
For these reasons no mother can accept plaque, bleeding gums or cavities. It is best to start an effective program with xylitol to eliminate dental disease and strengthen teeth in advance of pregnancy if possible. After the baby is born, it is especially important for parents to maintain oral health since cavity bacteria will easily pass to the babies from a mother’s mouth, when they are sharing food or kisses.
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