woman holding her pregnant bellyMany people don’t realize how important oral health is for your overall health, so they tend to neglect dental care. This is a universal problem, but the problem may be even more pronounced among pregnant women. Although more than three-quarters of women experience oral health problems during pregnancy, nearly half don’t go to the dentist.

Cost is the main concern that keeps women from visiting the dentist during pregnancy, although some still fear that visiting the dentist isn’t safe during pregnancy. At River Edge Dental, we can help you get quality dental care affordably. In addition, we want all women to understand that it’s safe to visit the dentist during pregnancy.

Your Health Is Your Baby’s Health

Although many mothers often think it’s necessary to sacrifice their own health to some extent in favor of ensuring their baby’s health, the opposite is true. If you’re not healthy, your child’s health may suffer.

For example, women with gum disease have an increased risk of pregnancy complications. Gum disease is linked to premature birth and low birth weight. The explanation for the connection is not known, but one theory is that inflammation linked to gum disease can restrict a baby’s growth, and may trigger preterm labor.

In addition, a mother’s health can contribute to her child’s oral health.  A mother’s consumption of vitamin D has a significant impact on her child’s risk of cavities in primary teeth. Children of women who have untreated cavities are three times more likely to have cavities as a child. Finally, even a mother’s stress can significantly impact a child’s cavity risk.

Cost Keeps Women Away

A 2015 survey of pregnant women showed that nearly half of all women didn’t go to the dentist during pregnancy.

Hormonal changes during pregnancy can lead to a worsening of oral health. Gum disease becomes more prevalent, along with symptoms like bleeding gums, receding gums, and even tooth mobility. In the Cigna survey, 76% of women admit to having some dental problems during pregnancy, such as those associated with gum disease. Although 55% of women still rate their oral health as very good or excellent, that is a marked drop from the 63% that gave similar ratings to their oral health before pregnancy.

The survey also showed that 43% of women didn’t see the dentist during pregnancy. More than a third, 36%, said it had been over a year since they’d seen the dentist for even an oral hygiene visit, and 28% admitted it had been two years or more since they’d seen the dentist.

Cost was the primary reason why women avoided dental care during pregnancy. Women with dental insurance were about twice as likely to see a dentist during pregnancy as those without insurance.

Helping to Make Dental Care Affordable

At River Edge Dentistry, we work hard to balance quality dental care with affordability. We know that no-one benefits from low-quality dental care, but people also don’t receive benefits if cost keeps them away from the dentist.

That’s why we’ve taken several steps to help make your dental care more affordable. One of these approaches is the REconomy Dental Savings Plan. This plan is an affordable way to pay for all of your necessary dental checkups and routine care, as well as giving you discounts on any necessary dental care. Discounts apply to additional cleanings, gum disease treatment, restorations, and more. Discounts also apply to cosmetic dentistry you might choose either before or after pregnancy.

We also offer financing for necessary dental procedures that you might have difficulty paying for otherwise.

Visiting the Dentist Is Safe During Pregnancy

In the past, many women believed that it wasn’t safe to visit the dentist during pregnancy. Whether this was just an old wives’ tale or if it was related to the use of unsafe materials and practices during the early days of dentistry, we know that today it is safe to visit the dentist during pregnancy.

In 2013, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists made the official recommendation that women should get dental care during pregnancy because it was safe and likely beneficial for their health and the health of their babies.

Dental treatments that are safe during pregnancy include:

  • Checkups
  • Dental cleanings
  • Gum disease treatment
  • Dental x-rays
  • Fillings and other dental restorations
  • Local dental anesthesia

Even more dental treatments are safe, but these are the most common ones that you might need. If you want or need additional dental care during pregnancy, talk to your Ob/Gyn.

For women who are especially nervous about their pregnancy, timing dental care during the second trimester of pregnancy allows an extra level of protection. This is the safest time for women to get dental treatment.

Safe Dental Care for Expectant Mothers in River Edge

If you are looking for a general dentist that can provide you with crucial checkups, cleaning, and other oral healthcare during pregnancy, please call (201) 343-4044 for an appointment with a dentist at River Edge Dental, New Jersey’s center for general & cosmetic dentistry.