A Medical expert, Dr Hope Abraham, has advised pregnant women to undergo dental examination to prevent mother-to-child transmission of diseases and infections during pregnancy.
Abraham who works with Gidan Mangoro Primary Health Centre, Abuja Municipal Area Council, gave the advice in an interview with the Newsmen in Abuja on Thursday.
He urged pregnant women to maintain periodontal health as well.
The expert said such procedure was necessary, especially at the early stage of pregnancy to ensure good health of mother and child, saying that if left untreated, it could lead to periodontal diseases.
According to Abraham, periodontal disease is a chronic, bacteria-induced, inflammatory condition that attacks the gum tissue and in more severe cases, the bone supporting the teeth.
“When a woman becomes pregnant, she knows it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle to ensure both the health of herself and the health of her baby.
“Research has indicated that women with periodontal disease may be at risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, such giving birth to a pre-term or low-birth weight baby.
“Also, if left untreated as well, periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, can lead to tooth loss. This has been associated with other systemic diseases, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease,” he said.
Abraham said that tenderness, redness or swollen gums were a few indications of periodontal disease.
He said, “Other symptoms include gums that bleed with tooth brushing or eating; gums that are pulling away from the teeth; bad breath and loose teeth.’’
He said that such signs should not be ignored especially during pregnancy, saying that it might require treatment by a dental professional.
Abraham said that maintenance of periodontal health was an important part of a healthy pregnancy while encouraging pregnant women to sustain their oral health.
He also recommended regular dental cleanings during pregnancy.
“Routine brushing and flossing and seeing a periodontist, dentist, or dental hygienist for a comprehensive periodontal evaluation during pregnancy may decrease the chance of adverse pregnancy complications.
“It is important for expectant mothers to monitor their periodontal health and to have a conversation with their periodontist or dentist about the most appropriate care.
“By maintaining your periodontal health, you are not only supporting your overall health but also helping to ensure a safe pregnancy and a healthy baby.”