Expectant and new mothers in this day and age have a lot to think about. There are plenty of commonly known substances, practices, infections, and conditions that can adversely affect the health of your baby, but we’d like to tell you about the lesser known dangers to your baby.
Dr. Hawkins wants you to know that research has shown a significant connection between the oral health of mothers and the health of their babies throughout pregnancy and infancy. We at Hawkins Family Dentistry know that mothers will do everything in their power to keep their children healthy, and that’s why we are asking Midlothian mothers to make a commitment to their own health. Read on to find out how and why!
How can Gum Disease Affect My Baby?
If you are an expectant mother with gum disease, recent studies suggest that your baby is seven times more likely to be born underweight. Scientists believe this is because of the toll gum infection takes on mothers’ bodies during the pregnancy. If you have gum disease or fear you may, don’t panic! Dr. Hawkins can treat the vast majority of periodontal (gum) disease cases, and it is usually a very simple process. As always, your best line of defense is to visit Hawkins Family Dentistry for your twice-a-year cleanings and we will advise you on how best to care for your mouth and treat any problems that may arise.
How Can Cavities in Baby Teeth Affect My Child?
While gum disease can pose problems during your pregnancy, cavities are troublesome for newborns and infants. Because babies’ immune systems are still developing, they are at high risk for getting cavities from adults or children. This means if you have a cavity, it is possible to give it to your baby through an exchange of saliva. Cavities are formed as a result of bacteria and various other conditions in the mouth, so they can spread from one person to another. Babies are particularly susceptible to this because of their weak immune systems and frequent contact with their parents’ saliva. In light of that, it is best to be mindful of sharing food, utensils, and kissing your baby on the mouth. If you want to be sure of your baby’s oral health safety and prevent cavities in baby teeth, the best thing to do is come see Dr. Hawkins!
What can I do to Protect My Baby’s Health?
This is a question that all mothers and fathers struggle with at some point or another. In fact, many mothers focus so much on the health of their babies that they neglect their own health. If you really want to protect your baby, protect yourself by staying healthy! We at Hawkins Family Dentistry know that having a baby and caring for a newborn can be very stressful, but we ask that you never lose sight of your own health during the process. Research has shown that stress is linked to problems with oral health, such as gum disease, bruxism (grinding your teeth), canker sores, xerostomia (dry mouth), and even temporomandibular disorder (TMD), a jaw malfunction that can cause earaches, headaches, jaw fatigue, and an uncomfortable clicking of the jaw. Don’t let it happen to you!
The moral of the story is that we want all Midlothian mothers to be healthy moms with happy smiles, so make sure to see Dr. Hawkins for your regular cleanings and visit all your other doctors regularly.