It's fairly logical that anyone who's pregnant should delay major dental procedures until after they've given birth. This covers procedures such as dental implants or oral surgery, but this isn't to say that pregnancy means you shouldn't be going to the dentist. In fact, it's quite the opposite, and there's one dental procedure that's not only entirely safe but becomes even more important when you're expecting a baby.

A Greater Relevance

Dental cleaning is a standard part of your regular dental checkups, and this takes on a greater relevance when pregnant. Of course, it's crucial at any stage, regardless of whether there's a baby on the way, but pregnancy can make you more susceptible to certain complications, which can be managed with a simple dental cleaning.

The Effects of Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a common condition, which occurs when an accumulation of plaque, tartar, and harmful biofilm (oral bacteria) causes your gums to become inflamed. This often leads to a bacterial infection, and if untreated, will eventually jeopardize your oral health. It can even lead to tooth loss. The trouble is that pregnancy often results in gingivitis.

Gingivitis While Pregnant

Pregnancy gingivitis is the result of hormonal imbalances. This makes your body more vulnerable to gingivitis, and even someone who takes the utmost care with their oral hygiene can be affected. Gums can become swollen and painful, with light bleeding. While the worst of this will subside once you've given birth and your hormones rebalance themselves, you certainly shouldn't wait.

Completely Harmless

Dental cleanings, along with maintaining your oral hygiene at home, are the best way to minimize the effects of pregnancy gingivitis, ideally avoiding the condition as much as possible. Remember that the scaling and polishing which achieves the cleaning are non-invasive, and won't harm you or your baby. It also helps to keep your teeth white by removing surface stains. 

The Importance of Regular Checkups

In addition to a professional cleaning, maintaining your dental checkups allows your dentist to spot any potential problems before they develop into something more serious. Your teeth can become especially vulnerable during pregnancy, so it's really important that you don't miss any of your regularly scheduled appointments. 

As with any medical procedure, it's important to tell your dentist that you're expecting a baby, but your pregnancy won't affect your ability to receive a thorough dental cleaning at a time when its benefits can be even more obvious. Contact a dentist for more information about dental cleanings