Pregnancy Gingivitis is just what the name describes. Gingivitis simply explained is the inflammation of gums. During pregnancy, women are more susceptible to swollen, sensitive, and irritable gums [American pregnancy association].
Now, this may not seem like too big of a deal, however there are instances of pregnancy gingivitis, a form of periodontal disease, causing or adding to the risk of premature, low birth weight babies. According to [this study] , bacteria that causes the inflammation can get into your bloodstream and even target the fetus. Endotoxins from the infection can start a cycle of production of cytokines and prostaglandins. If there is enough in the bloodstream, it can stimulate labor, even if your baby is premature. Another way is pro-inflammatory mediators getting into the placenta and creating fetal toxicity sometimes causing early delivery and in consequence, low birth weight babies.
To keep your baby safer, brush your teeth! It is as simple as that. When you make sure to brush twice a day and floss at least once, you are minimizing the risk for periodontal disease, pregnancy gingivitis, and in some cases, premature labor. There are already enough dangers that can happen to an unborn baby, so take one of the easy ones away by using that toothbrush and floss!
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