Planning A Baby

Planing a baby is possibly one of the most important decisions in a couples lifetime.

The to be mother has to prepare herself emotionally,physically and mentally for all the changes to come.The hormonal changes associated with pregnancy can also cause a series of changes in the oral enviornment.As we all know that prevention is better than cure,its best to make a visit to the dentist before planning a baby,discuss and understand what changes to expect during pregnancy.

Oral health affects your general health and vice versa. Researches have proved that an oral infection is capable of causing major health complications. E.g. A gum disease in your mouth is a bacterial infection. If not treated in time, it is capable of affecting the other body organs through the blood stream.

A women's life is marked with hormonal changes from the time of adolescence, motherhood to menopause. During these hormonal stages women need to give special heed to oral hygiene in order to prevent gum disease and oral infections.

The IDA suggests that along with a complete physical examination to rule out undiagnosed conditions or diseases,it is imperitive to visit a dentist to rule out oral health issues.

Visit your dentist
To rule out
  1. Cavities
  2. Gum Problems
  3. Bad breath
  4. Solutions to habits or addictions like smoking.

Good oral health is vital to good overall health specially during pregnancy.

The IDA recommends that even if you have never visited a dentist before do it now.See your dentist for a happy and healthy smile.

Planning A Baby

Healthy Habits

Visit your dentist regularly : Regular dental checkups help in detecting and prevention of oral and dental problems.

Brush and floss daily, even if you're tired: Work stress and busy social life and pressure of having a baby can leave one with very little time.

The IDA advises you to brush twice a day and floss,as this can help you save a lot of time and pain.

Limit fast food: eat well-balanced meals: Plan a healthy diet because junk .Junk food drains your body of all essential vitamins and minerals you need to remain healthy.Plan a healthy diet

Exercise regularly: it's good for your teeth:You have to prepare your body physically for and have optimum level of fitness if you are planning a pregnancy.

Consider treating yourself to cosmetic dentistry procedures at this time rather than after being pregnant.

Remain Stress Free: Being happy,peaceful and content is the key to good health.
Healthy Habits

Nutrition Tips

Now that you are planning a baby,along with lifestyle changes you have to modify your diet too.

Choosing what to eat should be based on a balanced diet and the amount of calories you need to carry out your daily activities.

Consume adequate synthetic folic acid daily (from fortified foods or supplements) and food forms of folic acid from a varied diet.

You can get adequate folic acid by taking a multivitamin with 400 micrograms (mcg) of it daily. You can supplement this with will also find it in fortified breakfast cereals; citrus fruits and juices; dried peas and beans; and green, leafy vegetables such as spinach, collard and turnip greens, and broccoli.

Eat foods high in heme-iron, iron-rich plant foods, iron-fortified foods, or foods that facilitate iron absorption, such as vitamin C- rich foods.Iron is important during pregnancy as it prevents anemia.

Eat a variety of fruits

Eat more dark green veggies, such as broccoli, kale, and other dark leafy greens; orange veggies, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and winter squash; and beans and peas, such as pinto beans, kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans (chick peas), split peas, and lentils.

Get your calcium-rich foods

Eat at least 3 ounces of whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, rice, or pasta every day. One ounce is about 1 slice of bread, 1 cup of breakfast cereal, or 1/2 cup of cooked rice or pasta.

Vary your protein choices with more fish, beans, peas, nuts, and seeds.

Nutrition Tips

Concerns Unique to You

Oral contraceptives:
The effect of Oral Contraceptives on the oral cavity is a growing concern with the increasing number of women.If you have been using oral contraceptives for a prolonged period it may cause specific problems in your mouth like:
Gingival inflammation
Local alveolar osteitis i.e the non-healing of an extraction socket.
Dry mouth
Habits like smoking, drinking and drugs:

In women, smoking increases risk for cardiovascular disease because it effects hormones that cause estrogen deficiency,thus reducing the chances of pregnancy. Smoking before and during pregnancy also increases miscarriage rates, as smoking increases the chances of an egg to have chromosomal abnormalities .A man's health and lifestyle can affect fertility and conception. Smoking is known to cause fertility issues.

Drinking before getting pregnant can also cause problems. Alcohol consumption can lower your chances of conception, and it's also linked with higher chances of miscarriage.

The IDA recommends that you discuss your current general health issues, medications, lifestyle and habits with your dentist, before planning a baby.

True or False

1: There is no need to see a dentist if there is no visible problem with my teeth.

1: It is advisable to see your dentist twice a year, no matter what condition your teeth are in at the moment. Sometimes, only a dentist can see a possible problem, and it is always better to start treatment in the earlier stages.

A cavity if not caught early can sneakily eat its way in to the pulp of your tooth. That’s when the pain strikes. The treatment then shifts from what would have been a simple filling, into a 3 or 4 visit Root Canal Procedure. This is how regular visits can help identify problems early and avoid expensive and time consuming procedures later.

2: Dental health has no connection with planning a baby.

2: The mouth is the window to the body.
A pregnant woman in poor oral health with no access to care, or with nutritional habits that promote poor dental health, can pass bad bacteria, bad habits and the same lack of access to her children, who run the risk of passing them on, “It’s a cycle.”

Research has shown that periodontal disease may be responsible for up to 18 percent of preterm births. This is not to say that Gum disease is the only or main factor causing Pre term births. But that it could slowly and steadily contribute to it if left unchecked. Periodontal disease may be as detrimental to pregnancy as smoking or alcohol abuse.