Pregnancy hormones are released for nine months and the body cannot work to stop unwanted effects during this time. In the mouth, swollen and bleeding gums during pregnancy are just a side-effect of higher hormone levels that nearly every pregnant woman must suffer with.
Causes of Sore and Bleeding Gums
Hormones are again to blame for bleeding gums and gum soreness during pregnancy. The increase of blood volume and water retention during pregnancy is also a catalyst for swelling and inflammation. Women often report bleeding during and after brushing their teeth, but some women may experience spontaneous bleeding in their mouth at other times of the day as well. Hormones are also responsible for reducing the acid in saliva, which can leave the mouth more susceptible to bacteria, plaque, and infection so brushing and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash is important.
Important Facts About Sore and Bleeding Gums
While the effect of hormones on the gums is painful and annoying, there is rarely anything to worry about. Visiting the dentist during pregnancy is perfectly safe as long as you tell your dentist you are carrying a child. Dental x-rays are not safe during pregnancy and that part of the dental visit will need to be avoided. Dentists can also work with you to ensure gum and tooth health while defenses are low.
Treatment for Sore and Bleeding Gums
Brushing and flossing regularly while pregnant is the first line of defense against potential infections and tooth decay. Pregnant women should also see a dentist once or twice during the pregnancy for a regular cleaning and routine oral evaluation. Brushing the tongue to reduce bacteria in the mouth, and brushing after vomiting if morning sickness is a problem, also helps to prevent infection, pain and bleeding.