Toothache during pregnancy is a common condition. Pregnancy can be the most beautiful experience for a woman. And every woman wants EVERYTHING during those nine months to be perfect!
This is because EVERY (well, almost every) woman wants to be the best mom in the world and would never want to settle for anything but the best for her baby.
However, pregnancy is also the time when a woman’s body undergoes changes every day. As the fetus inside her grows, so does the list of her complications. With every passing day, she becomes more and more susceptible to minor ailments, toothache being one of them.
While a normal person (by NORMAL, I mean a person who is not pregnant) can easily swallow a few pills and get relief- whether temporary or long lasting- from toothache, a pregnant woman does not have many options available to her because both painkillers and antibiotics can have side effects, and are capable of causing harm to the fetus.
Let us first try to analyze the main causes of toothache during pregnancy.
What Causes Toothache During Pregnancy?
Toothache in most pregnant women is due to three main reasons:
(1) Lack Of Oral Hygiene:
Brushing the teeth induces vomiting in most women, particularly during the first trimester. Due to this reason, many women do not brush their teeth regularly or as often as they should. Another reason for avoiding brushing can be heightened sensitivity in gums and teeth. As a result of lack of oral hygiene, plaque starts building up and the mouth becomes a breeding ground for all types of infections. Many teeth related problems which had been dormant for a while become major irritants.
(2) Hormonal Changes In The Mother’s Body:
A pregnant woman may get a toothache due to non dental reasons as well. The female hormones (namely estrogen and progesterone) are secreted in larger quantities than usual during pregnancy. An increased level of these hormones in the mother’s body leads to bloating. Gums become puffy and more highly susceptible to infection and/or inflammation.
(3) Lack Of Adequate Nutrients:
It is advised to have a healthy diet during pregnancy because a large part of nourishment from the food eaten by the mother during pregnancy goes to the fetus growing inside her. This might cause a deficiency of vital minerals (particularly calcium) and vitamins inside her body. As her calcium and vitamin levels drop, she becomes increasingly susceptible to tooth infections and toothache.
Toothache Options During Pregnancy:
Most pregnancies these days are by choice and not by chance. If the pregnancy is planned, a smart woman would do well to have her teeth thoroughly examined by a qualified dentist before she conceives. This is because routine dental procedures like extraction, fillings, root canal, etc. also involve the use of painkillers and antibiotics and that is something any pregnant woman would want to avoid. Since delaying such treatments could mean having to put up with nine months of agony, the smartest option would be to take care of the “BAD” teeth before planning a pregnancy.
Opting for over-the-counter medications for pain relief during pregnancy could lead to the following complications:
- Preterm labor
- Premature birth
- Low birth weight baby
- The risk of mother developing gestational diabetes
Preventing Toothache During Pregnancy:
As has been wisely said, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The same holds good for any types of toothaches during pregnancy as well.
Here are a few preventive measures which can help avoid any such toothache altogether:
- Talk to your gynecologist if brushing induces vomiting. Avoiding brushing is not the solution. He might be able to come up with another solution for your problem without your having to compromise on oral hygiene. If you don’t want any harmful bacteria lurking in the dangerous corners of the mouth, brushing twice a day is mandatory.
- Floss at least twice a week too, to ensure that there are no food particles sticking in between those tiny spaces between the teeth.
- Since consuming sugary and sweet foods causes building up of tartar deposits, make sure to rinse your mouth thoroughly after consuming sweets, if the temptation for sweets is too great for you to resist.
- If you see an inflammation in your gums (which might or might not be accompanied by bleeding), see your dentist at the earliest.
- Use a soft bristled toothbrush to avoid any injury to gums and teeth.
- Most importantly, eat healthily. Your diet must be very rich in calcium. Not only will it benefit your teeth, but also your baby’s!
Do you know of any household remedies that can help a woman get rid of a toothache during pregnancy? If you do, please write to us. Sharing tips with us can save many women the ordeal of having to put up with a troublesome tooth.
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