Many 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 a new survey released by Cigna shows that the problem may be even more pronounced among pregnant women. The survey shows that although more than three-quarters of women experience oral health problems during pregnancy, nearly half don’t go to the dentist.

pregnant woman's belly

Cost Keeps Women Away

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.

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. And a mother’s consumption of vitamin D has a significant impact on her child’s risk of cavities in primary teeth. Finally, even a mother’s stress can significantly impact a child’s cavity risk.

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.