How Periodontal Disease Can Be Linked To Premature Birth
Over the past decade, it has become apparent that periodontal disease does more negatively for the individual suffering than just rack up those extra dental bills. Experts have since linked heart disease, diabetes and other major life threatening conditions to periodontal disease. Meaning that now more than ever it is important to practice exceptional oral hygiene.
The bacteria that cause infections of the mouth, such as gingivitis and periodontitis are vicious little things that do not just stop at literally eating a tooth alive. Nope, instead they will continue to travel throughout the body wreaking havoc on any such culprit they choose.
The latest discovery involves expecting mothers as experts now believe that periodontal disease also contributes to premature birth. This makes sense when you consider that approximately 40 percent of expecting mothers develop gingivitis during pregnancy, which may go on to become periodontitis and that one and every 10 pregnant mothers gives birth prematurely.
Periodontal Concerns for Expecting Mothers
Most all pregnant women will develop inflamed gums during pregnancy due to the surge in hormone levels and often these changes are merely temporary. However, on the occasion that they are not it is vital that the mother seek dental attention immediately to address the issue as the bacteria that generally will begin to develop under the gums can be very harmful to mother and baby. Experts say that these bacteria can travel through the mother’s bloodstream, potentially exposing the unborn baby to harmful bacteria. It gets worse, they also say that these bacteria trigger the bodies “deliver the baby now” reaction leading to preterm birth.
It has been suggested by experts that 1 in 5 preterm births could have been prevented by proper periodontal care. The evidence supporting these claims is so powerful that even insurance companies have taken note by offering highly aggressive periodontal care to expecting mothers.
Please contact our office if you have any questions about periodontal disease.