What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums that is caused when plaque accumulates in the spaces between the gums and the teeth. The accumulation of bacteria can lead to the loss of bone around the teeth and can eventually lead to tooth decay and tooth loss. More than 50 percent of adults have some form of gingivitis.
During pregnancy, about half of all women (60 to 70 percent) experience a condition called pregnancy gingivitis. It is caused by an increase in hormone levels, which can exaggerate a woman's response to dental plaque in the mouth. This extra plaque may cause swelling, bleeding, redness and/or tenderness in the gums. Changes in the gums are most noticeable from the second month of pregnancy, reaching a maximum in the eighth month. To control the amount of plaque in your mouth and to prevent gingivitis, brush your teeth regularly – at least twice a day for two minutes – and floss your teeth every day. These actions help reduce the bacteria that can lead to pregnancy gingivitis.
How to Avoid Gum Disease:
- Brush thoroughly at least twice a day, preferably in the morning and at night
- Take your time; you should spend at least two minutes brushing your teeth
- Be sure to use anti-plaque toothpaste to help protect your teeth from decay and gingivitis
- Rinse thoroughly after brushing to get rid of bacteria in hard-to-reach places
- Remember to floss daily to help avoid the build up of bacteria
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet
- Avoid sugary snacks
- Continue to visit your dentist regularly (once it is safe for the baby)
Step Up Your Oral Care Routine
Maintaining the health of your teeth and gums is necessary to avoid the risk of developing pregnancy gingivitis and to get your on the path to better long-term oral health. By investing in a rechargeable electric toothbrush, you can begin to take the steps to reduce the amount of plaque in your mouth and prevent the onset of gum disease.