Swollen and bleeding gums are common during pregnancy. This inflammation of the gum is known as pregnancy gingivitis. It is caused by hormonal changes that increase blood flow to the gum , causing more sensitive, irritable and swollen gum.
The increase in the level of progesterone during pregnancy makes it easier for certain bacteria that causes gingivitis to grow . This makes the gum more susceptible to plaque and exaggerate the body’s response to toxins that result from plaque. If you have gum disease, pregnancy makes it worse. The severity of pregnancy gingivitis increases during the second trimester.
What are the symptoms of pregnancy gingivitis ?
Symptoms range from red looking gum that bleeds a little when teeth is brushed to severe swelling and bleeding of gum tissue.
How to manage pregnancy gingivitis .
It is essential to take good care of your gums and teeth during pregnancy. Brush your teeth at least two times a day and floss once daily. You may use a soft tooth brush to reduce bleeding. You should also try to keep your dental appointments and discuss any problems you have with your dentist.
Take these steps to manage swollen gum and have a healthier oral hygiene.
- brush your teeth twice daily especially after throwing up from morning sickness
- see your dentist at least once during pregnancy
- rinse your mouth with warm water periodically or daily
- eat healthy
You should note that untreated gingivitis can lead to severe form of gum disease known as periodontitis. Periodontitis increases your risk for preterm labor. Bleeding and sensitivity of gum should return to normal after delivery. If your condition gets worse during and after pregnancy, contact your dentist.Content Sources
Teeth and gum during pregnancy. NHS Choices. http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/teeth-and-gums-pregnant.aspx. Accessed December 4, 2014
Pregnancy Gingivitis and Pregnancy Tumors. WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/pregnancy-gingivitis-tumors. Accessed December 4, 2014