Oral health begins before birth

Can the health of a pregnant person's mouth affect the health of their baby's mouth?

The answer is yes.

Science says so. Taking care of your own teeth while pregnant is the very first thing you can do to protect your baby’s mouth. Through good home care and regular trips to the dentist, you can minimize your number of mouth bacteria. This helps delay or stop these bacteria from reaching your infant. The results are fewer early childhood cavities.

woman sitting in a dental chair

Dental cleanings and treatment during pregnancy are safe. They are recommended and very important. Your dentist will check your mouth for cavities and gum disease. These can exist even without symptoms. Your dentist can also give tips for healthier habits and more effective home care routines. And establishing care with a dentist when you’re pregnant makes it easier for both you and your baby after they are born. It’s one less thing to worry about.

Continuing healthy habits for yourself during and after pregnancy really is key.  Eating healthy foods and snacks, brushing and flossing and regular dental visits are all good examples. Along with these, regular dental visits for you and baby give you both the best chance for a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

Need help finding a dentist?  You can find a link to your dental plan’s provider directory on our Dental Health page.
Your dental plan is listed on the back of your Health Share member ID card. If you can’t find your card or are unsure of who your dental plan is, call Health Share Customer Service at 503-416-8090, or toll-free at 888-519-3845, TTY 711.