How a Healthy Diet Can Affect Your Oral Health During Pregnancy
Dr. Amanda Tavoularis (dentably.com)
Pregnancy is such a special time in a woman’s life. Growing your family and bringing a life into the world is a beautiful thing, and you’re probably hustling trying to prepare for the little one’s arrival.
One thing to keep in mind during your pregnancy is your oral health, and how your diet affects it. I have been practicing dentistry for more than 20 years and have worked with a lot of pregnant women on how to optimize their diet to have the best dental health for them and their baby.
Here is a list of tips and suggestions for you to use during your own pregnancy.
Why A Healthy Diet is Important
Once you learn that you’re pregnant, it’s more important to eat a well-balanced diet. What you eat during your pregnancy affects the development of your baby, so you’ll want to make sure that your baby is getting a sufficient quantity of nutrients including protein, calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, C, and D.
It’s also common for women to experience strong cravings during their pregnancy. Frequent snacking can be an invitation for tooth decay, which left untreated can result in gum disease. Pregnant women are already more susceptible to gum disease due to their changing hormones, so it’s important to be mindful of your snacking habits and do your part in trying to prevent any oral issues.
Talk with your physician and dentist on advice regarding your diet while pregnant and work to choose foods that are healthy for you and your baby.
Tips for Eating Healthy While Pregnant
The best way to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet during your pregnancy is to eat a variety of healthy foods including fruits, vegetables, whole-grain products, lean proteins, and a variety of dairy products. Be mindful of your sugar intake and try to limit your consumption of sugary cookies, candies, juices, etc.
Another way to keep a healthy diet is to drink plenty of water, especially between meals and snacks. If you can, drinking water that contains fluoride will help your teeth remain healthy throughout your pregnancy.
Finally, receiving the recommended amount of folic acid throughout your pregnancy will help reduce the risk of birth defects. You should consume 600 micrograms of folic acid each day. You can do this by taking a dietary supplement and eating foods high in folate and foods fortified in folic acids. This includes foods such as asparagus, broccoli, and leafy greens, legumes, and a variety of fruits including papaya, oranges, strawberries, cantaloupe, and bananas. You can also find grain products fortified with folic acids such as bread, cereals, pasta, and rice.
Once you learn that you are expecting a child, it can be one of the most special times in your life. It’s also important that during this time, you take proper measures to keep you and your baby healthy. One thing to be aware of is your diet and how it affects your oral health. Both of these are extremely important for the development of your little one. Eating a well-balanced diet and having a good dental care routine are the best ways to keep your mouth healthy for the both of you.