What Dental Treatments Should I Avoid During Pregnancy?   

During pregnancy, you might be worried about getting dental treatment in case it affects your baby. Whilst there are some dental treatments that can be hazardous to a foetus, what’s far more dangerous to your health and by extension, your baby’s, is to ignore any developing dental problems. 

It’s important to tell your dentist if you are pregnant or trying to conceive, as this can have an effect on what dental treatments are safe for you. 

In this article, we will discuss what dental treatments are safe and which dental treatments to avoid before pregnancy, during pregnancy, and after. 

Should I See The Dentist When I’m Pregnant? 

If you are planning for a baby, it’s a good idea for both you and your partner to visit the dentist. You should plan to get any major dental work done before getting pregnant, as pregnancy can affect what dental procedures you are able to have.

Not only that, but gum disease has been linked to fertility. In women, gum disease may make it more difficult to get pregnant, and in men can cause poor sperm health. 

There’s also some evidence that people with gum disease may be more likely to be affected by premature birth, giving birth to a low weight baby, and by gestational diabetes (a condition where some women develop diabetes during pregnancy. This usually goes away shortly after birth). 

With so many risks associated with gum disease and dental problems during pregnancy, it’s best to make sure that both your partner’s oral health and your own is perfect. 

You should continue to get regular check-ups during the period where you are trying to conceive, during pregnancy, and for the first year after giving birth. 

Are Metal (Amalgam) Fillings Safe During Pregnancy? 

Amalgam fillings are believed by many to be unsafe as they contain small amounts of mercury – but the truth is that the amount of mercury found in an amalgam filling is minimal compared to the amount of mercury we are already exposed to in the environment. That being said, as there are concerns that mercury can be passed through you to your baby, it’s advised not to get an amalgam filling during pregnancy. If you already have an amalgam filling, there’s nothing to worry about, you don’t need to get it removed just because you’re pregnant. If you need a filling and are planning to get pregnant, you should ask your dentist if amalgam fillings are appropriate for you. 

Can I Have an Oral X-Ray If I’m Pregnant? 

Whilst oral x-rays are generally safe for pregnant people as the radiation is concentrated in the oral area and avoids the abdomen, many dentists and patients wish to avoid oral x-rays during pregnancy, especially in the first trimester, due to the risks associated with radiation exposure for foetuses. 

Oral x-rays will usually only be conducted during pregnancy in an emergency situation. 

Can I Have Emergency Dental Treatment During Pregnancy? 

Emergency dental treatment should be conducted as soon as possible, even if you are pregnant or trying to conceive. Since most emergency procedures such as root canal or extractions (getting a tooth pulled out) may require anaesthetic or x-rays, your dentist may advise you to wait until your second trimester. 

Can I Have Cosmetic Treatments and Braces Whilst Pregnant? 

Non-essential dental work like composite bonding, veneers, whitening, and other  purely cosmetic procedures should ideally be scheduled before pregnancy or avoided until after giving birth. Whilst these procedures generally don’t pose a threat to your health or your baby’s health, it is better to avoid putting your body through any more discomfort than necessary during pregnancy. 

If you’re currently undergoing alignment treatment through traditional braces or Invisalign, there’s no need to stop just because you are pregnant – you should continue your treatment  as normal. 

In conclusion… 

As always, you know your body best. If there’s something you’re unsure of with your oral health at any time, but especially when you are pregnant, our dentists are always happy to help. 


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