Dental Emergencies While Pregnant

Pregnancy is a very anxious time. Your body is in a state that it is not used to, and you may not be sure what to do in case of an emergency. Will the procedure you are planning harm the fetus? Will it harm you? While consulting with an obstetrician will answer many questions, you can’t be sure that an obstetrician will be around when an emergency strikes. Here are some guidelines that can help you in these difficult times. 

Pregnancy and your teeth

When you are expecting, your immune system is working overtime. Not only is it making extra sure that you are okay while you are under stress, but the baby has no immune system until after it is born, instead, mommies immune system covers the baby as well, like an umbrella under which two people are standing. When the immune system is compromised such, the first place where trouble starts to build up is the mouth. This is because the mouth is constantly overrun by bacteria anyway, and while the immune system is healthy, it can regulate the amount of bacteria in it, and keep it healthy. But during pregnancy, the patient is much more likely to have dental troubles, and thus is considered at risk. This means an increased likelihood of cavities.


Certain dental procedures you need to get while pregnant, as they are absolutely necessary, and can otherwise complicate pregnancies, while certain other ones would just unnecessarily tax your immune system, and are either too risky or too superfluous to warrant getting done before the child’s birth. Procedures like dental implantation, not immediate oral surgery, aesthetic repairs and anything which may require a lot of x-rays should be postponed until after the child is born. X-rays are harmful to the fetus, but being exposed a couple of times during pregnancy is not known to have any teratogenic qualities. 

Extractions, fillings and root canals should be done while still pregnant. These problems are painful and can induce swelling and an adverse immune reaction, which is harmful to the fetus.

Periodontal care 

If you have any periodontal issues, you should get those settled as soon as you know you are pregnant. Having mild periodontitis may be a problem, as the condition can spiral out of control due to a weakened immune system. Make sure you treat your gums early on, when the fetus is still small, as later on antibiotics and the stress of possibly surgery can damage the fetus in later trimesters.  

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