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Pregnant women and dental health
Updated: 11/17/2008 8:00:21 PM

Pregnant women and dental health Pregnancy can be a tumultuous time, with a woman's body undergoing numerous changes during the nine months before a baby is born.

The American Academy of Periodontology has reminded women to carefully monitor their dental health during this period, for their own wellbeing and that of their unborn child.

According to the AAP, around 50 percent of expectant mothers suffer from what is known as pregnancy gingivitis.

Those who have this condition may find their gums swelling, bleeding or feeling tender. It is most common between the second and eighth months of pregnancy.

Although dental care is important during all stages of life, it is especially vital during pregnancy because a woman's hormones are rising and falling, which increases the chances of developing gum disease.

The AAP recommends that moms-to-be have regular dental checkups and teeth cleanings to help reduce their risk of gingivitis. They should also practice good dental hygiene, brushing twice a day and flossing daily.

Some studies have uncovered a link between women who have severe periodontal disease while pregnant and low birth-weight infants.

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