Getting your tooth extracted isn’t recommended during pregnancy. If the condition isn’t severe, waiting until after you give birth is more favorable. If the condition is serious, it should be prioritized regardless of the trimester. Dentists usually perform this dental activity in the second trimester keeping in mind the mother’s comfort and the baby’s development. Getting local anesthesia and dental X-ray done isn’t harmful to the baby. As a pain reliever, Tylenol is recommended. To avoid tooth extraction, pregnant women need to take extra care of their teeth and gums, restrict their food cravings, and go for more frequent dental visits. Discussing any concerns with your dentist and OB-GYN can help you calm down.
No, it’s not just you who hates being in the chair, under the spotlight, with your mouth wide open while you don’t know where to look.
Everyone feels the awkwardness of being in the dentist’s chair and becomes incredibly uncomfortable when you’re sitting there pregnant.
Pregnancy in itself possesses many challenges and can be difficult for many people.
On top of that, if you experience dental complications getting your tooth pulled out would be the last thing you want in this condition.
Of course, getting your teeth cleaned is nothing to worry about, but when it comes to getting your tooth pulled, many women wonder if it’ll hurt more and, most importantly, is it safe? Let’s take a look!
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Dental issues during pregnancy
Going to the dentist regularly every 6 months is essential for oral health.
It becomes easier to recognize any issues with your teeth or gums if you’re regular, and it helps treat the problems in their initial stage before they can create further harm.
Even if you go to your dentist regularly, pregnancy brings its own challenges during this time, and some issues demand more than regular care of your teeth.
Pregnancy hormones can lead to the development of some dental issues you don’t wish to face.
Having cravings is common among pregnant women, and those who crave sugary snacks or things high in carbohydrates are more prone to tooth decay.
So you’ve to be extra careful and keep your teeth clean.
Tooth decay could also be influenced by other factors, such as vomiting or acid reflux during pregnancy.
With morning sickness and many women prone to reflux, the acid quickly erodes the teeth during pregnancy.
Due to hormonal changes, women suffer from pregnancy gingivitis which causes an inflammation of the gums that can cause swelling and tenderness.
Your gums are more prone to bleeding during this time, along with plaque build-up.
If you don’t visit your dentist regularly or don’t keep a strict check on your teeth and gums, it can become severe enough to cause serious decay of your gums and teeth.
Pregnancy tumors, also known as pyogenic granuloma, can cause an extra growth of tissues between the teeth.
The accumulated plaque can cause damage to your teeth.
Is tooth extraction necessary during pregnancy?
The above factors make taking care of your teeth more necessary during pregnancy. These minor issues can develop into serious problems requiring tooth removal when not taken care of.
The need to get your tooth pulled out depends on the severity of the issue.
Most dentists don’t prefer performing any dental treatment because of performing an x-ray and giving general anesthesia during pregnancy.
Dental treatments like tooth extraction or teeth whitening are something dentists wish to wait until after the baby is born.
When to have tooth extraction during pregnancy?
Depending on your current dental health, you might need to get your tooth extracted if the condition worsens.
When you’re experiencing severe pain affecting your daily life, you can’t help but need to get the decayed tooth pulled out.
If not done in time, it could affect other teeth, your health, and, in turn, your baby’s health.
Between 15-20 weeks, the second trimester is a much better time for this dental activity, when you’re also somewhat comfortable lying down on the chair without any issues.
In the first trimester, the baby’s vital organs are developing. You would want to avoid every possible risk, including getting any dental procedure done or taking pain relievers or antibiotics.
In the third trimester, the belly has grown big enough for the expectant mother to be uncomfortable on the chair, even for a short duration.
Something like tooth extraction takes longer to even consider during this trimester.
In a dental emergency, it’s essential to perform tooth extraction for a pregnant patient, regardless of their trimester, with their obstetrician’s consent.
Local anesthesia is given via the injection onto the part that needs to be operated. It’s perfectly safe for the baby, as this drug doesn’t travel through the bloodstream.
Your dentist will discuss all the procedure-related stuff beforehand and clear any doubts.
X-ray for tooth extraction during pregnancy
Besides anesthesia for pregnant mothers, one of the concerns is getting an X-ray done for tooth extraction.
Although your dentist will ensure all precautions are undertaken to perform the X-ray, it’ll be done if necessary.
Most dentists skip X-rays if a pregnant woman is on the chair. But if an X-ray is necessary, they’ll ask you to wear a lead apron to protect the baby against exposure.
Post-extraction rituals for pregnant mothers
Mothers are also skeptical about taking medicines during this time because they don’t want to harm the baby.
As scary as it might be, the dentist isn’t your enemy and will help you suggest better medications to heal faster from the tooth extraction.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is a good pain reliever approved for use by pregnant mothers during pregnancy. But only if medically recommended. Please don’t take it for personal use.
Your dentist might also recommend nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen if you’re in the first 30 weeks of pregnancy.
After extraction, you might face various issues and have doubts, like when to start eating solid food, which can be cleared with your dentist before undergoing treatment.
Tips for preventing dental issues
There are always ways to take better care of your oral health.
If you want to avoid landing in your dentist’s chair for a reason, such as tooth extraction, you must be active enough to care for your teeth and gums.
Of course, brushing twice daily and flossing after dinner is a part of necessary dental care. But you’ve to be careful about other things during pregnancy.
Cravings are a part of this time, and having all those sugary foods plus food with carbohydrates is enough to create cavities and ruin your teeth.
Limiting such food, especially after dinner, is something you need to care for.
Amongst all the excitement about the baby’s arrival, don’t forget to schedule appointments with the dentist during pregnancy to keep your teeth and gums in check.
If an issue is detected early, it can be prevented from becoming severe enough to demand a tooth extraction.
What’s the best medicine for toothache when pregnant?
Toothaches could mean different things and signify various dental issues.
Due to a change of hormones during pregnancy, a person is more prone to getting dental problems.
Since this time is sensitive enough, you can eliminate foods and beverages that cause sensitivity or pain in your gums or teeth.
To relieve pain and inflammation, you can take warm water, mix half a teaspoon of salt, and try to gargle with this water.
Combined, warm water and salt help reduce pain and inflammation and heal your mouth.
You can try put relieve pain by applying a cold compress to your jaw. Tylenol is a recommended medicine for pregnancy as an over-the-counter medicine.
Can a tooth infection harm my unborn baby?
If you don’t take proper care, an infection in the teeth will cause pain and inflammation to your gums, causing stress and directly affecting your unborn baby.
An infection can be severe enough to cause you to have a fever, directly affecting your baby’s health.
How long after a tooth extraction will it stop hurting?
Tooth extraction requires a person to be able to handle the pain that follows it afterward.
This is one of the reasons dentists avoid doing this on pregnant women because of the care this procedure needs.
The pain lasts for one to three weeks and can last for months for someone. It especially becomes worse at night due to the sleeping position.
Laying down causes blood to rush to our heads, putting extra pressure on the sensitive area where the tooth is extracted.
Elevating your head by propping several pillows below your head can help provide relief as it prevents blood from pooling in your head and mouth. It improves circulation and decreases swelling.
Can the hormones during pregnancy lead to a wisdom tooth eruption?
Hormonal changes during pregnancy can lead to various oral health issues, including gum inflammation and tooth decay, but they do not directly cause a wisdom tooth to erupt.
Wisdom teeth typically erupt between the ages of 17 and 25, but this can vary quite a bit based on each individual.
Are there any specific oral hygiene practices to follow during pregnancy to prevent gum disease and tooth decay?
Regular brushing with fluoride toothpaste, flossing, and maintaining a healthy diet are essential practices.
It’s also important to manage morning sickness effectively to prevent acid from damaging the teeth. Regular dental check-ups are also recommended to catch any issues early.
How do hormones during pregnancy affect oral health?
Hormonal changes during pregnancy can lead to swollen gums that bleed easily, a condition known as “pregnancy gingivitis.”
It can also lead to “pregnancy tumors” or pyogenic granuloma, which are noncancerous growths on the gums often exacerbated by excess plaque.
These hormonal changes can also affect the body’s response to the bacteria that cause gum disease.
Can a tooth infection during pregnancy lead to preterm birth?
Research suggests that severe tooth infections, especially those leading to periodontal disease, can increase the risk of preterm birth.
It’s essential to prioritize dental care during pregnancy by maintaining good oral hygiene and promptly addressing any dental concerns.
Getting ready for a tooth extraction during pregnancy is no easy task. In general, tooth extraction is a delicate process, and it can become twice as difficult for a pregnant woman.
If the condition of your tooth is severe and you can’t seem to wait longer, getting the tooth extracted is favorable. Otherwise, try to postpone it until after you give birth. Usually, the dentist performs this dental activity in the second trimester.
Discussing the procedure and aftercare can help you clear your doubts and calm down, but usually, it’s not something to stress over.
Try your best to take care of your teeth and gums to prevent the situation from worsening to needing a tooth extraction.