Most mums start taking care of their babies long before they are born.
Part of this process includes getting plenty of rest, eating well, making regular visits to the doctor, and taking prenatal vitamins. What you might not know is that your baby’s teeth need to be thought about at this time also.
Doing these things consistently during the week by week baby development during pregnancy helps ensure that the baby will arrive healthy and strong.
Taking care of baby’s dental development before they are born makes a difference to the condition of their teeth from when they make their first appearance until they reach an advanced age. Baby teeth start to develop in the second month of pregnancy.
An expectant mother has several ways to maximise her baby’s dental health during the stages of development of the fetus.
Here are a few of the ways to help your baby develop strong healthy teeth:
Visit the dentist
Before the baby is born, and even before the mother gets pregnant, she should make sure that her own oral health is at its best by having regular visits to the dentist.
Babies who are born to mothers with gum disease are at greater risk for infections, low birth rate, and in some cases being born premature.
Women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy should notify their dentists.
Get enough minerals in the diet
In order for tooth enamel to develop normally, minerals including calcium and phosphorus are important to ensure that babies have no enamel deficiency. Lack of sufficient enamel leads to tooth decay and tooth loss.
A good prenatal vitamin should have sufficient quantities of the necessary minerals to promote healthy teeth.
Stress causes nutrients that are vital to the baby’s development to be absorbed more slowly or not at all.
It is important that the pregnancy remains as stress-free as possible so that the developing fetus absorbs the vitamins and minerals necessary for healthy teeth.
Each of the stages of pregnancy development is greatly influenced by the stress levels of the expectant mother.
Just as stress prevents nutrients from efficient use by the fetus, smoking also hinders healthy growth and is one of the causes of low birth weight and premature delivery. Any activity that keeps nutrients from being absorbed effects the development of healthy teeth.
Ask for an alternative antibiotic to Tetracycline
Sometimes it is necessary to take an antibiotic during pregnancy due to an infection. Taking the antibiotic tetracycline could cause a staining of the baby’s permanent teeth.
Asking the doctor for an alternative antibiotic to treat infection is a reasonable request for an expectant mum when it comes to protecting her unborn child’s dental health.
With assistance from her dentist and primary care provider, the expectant mother knows that her child will be born with the best possible start to a life full of healthy smiles.
Do you have any other tips to add to this list? Please share in the comments below.