Wearing Braces While Pregnant

Posted On: December 3, 2019
While many adults have utilized braces as an orthodontic treatment, pregnant women may be wondering if they are able to undergo the same treatment during gestation. The good news is that wearing braces while pregnant is not uncommon. In fact, at Fry Orthodontics, we have had many expecting mothers choose to go through orthodontic treatment.  Discover important information regarding this topic and learn some helpful tips to follow if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant while wearing braces.

Facts About Pregnancy and Dental Health

Hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy might change your body’s reaction to plaque and germs. These changes might increase the chance of periodontal disease and gingivitis during pregnancy. Here are some important things to keep in mind when considering wearing braces while pregnant:

  • Pregnancy hormones may make your teeth looser than usual.
  • Increases in estrogen as well as progesterone levels are common during pregnancy and will change the way in which your gums respond to plaque. This is why brushing and flossing is extremely important for everyone, especially expecting mothers who are in orthodontic treatment.
  • Pregnant women are at a higher risk for getting gum disease.
  • Regardless of wearing or not wearing braces, oral hygiene should be emphasized during pregnancy.

How Morning Sickness Can Effect Orthodontic Treatment

If possible, it is best to wait and start orthodontic treatment after the first trimester of pregnancy when early morning symptoms are usually no longer present. Morning sickness can play a role in dental treatment as excess acid from stomach bile can weaken and cause permanent damage to teeth enamel. If you began orthodontic treatment before pregnancy and are not yet to your second trimester, it’s crucial that you rinse your mouth out with water after experiencing morning sickness. Otherwise, the acid from your stomach bile will form a thin layer over your teeth and sit there for long periods of time, eating away at your enamel. Be sure to ask your orthodontist about using fluoride mouth rinse to protect your teeth from decay during pregnancy. Reach out to your orthodontic office if you have any questions or concerns.

Which Treatment is Best: Braces or Invisalign?

There are two types of orthodontic treatment used to align teeth and enhance your smile. While many adults choose one over the other for various reasons, you may be wondering if you should choose to wear Invisalign or braces while pregnant.  Since pregnant women are already at such a high risk for gingivitis and gum disease, Invisalign is typically more convenient for expecting mothers. Unlike braces, aligners can be removed while eating to avoid any excess food getting stuck in your teeth. This method of orthodontics also makes it easier for you to brush and floss your teeth every day, keeping your gums as healthy as possible. Keep in mind that having braces while pregnant is not technically frowned upon. If you are someone who already takes great care of your teeth, and will do so while pregnant, than either treatment option is doable.

Tips for Wearing Braces While Pregnant

There are many things to consider when undergoing orthodontic treatment during pregnancy, from dental hygiene to they types of foods to avoid. While many recommendations are the same for everyone wearing braces, there are few that apply to women who are wearing braces while pregnant. Here are some helpful tips to consider: 

  • Be sure to make your dentist and orthodontist aware of your pregnancy before starting treatment so they can avoid taking x-rays.
  • Brush and floss your teeth daily.
  • Anyone who wears braces should avoid eating hard, crunchy foods that can result broken brackets and wires.
  • Women who are pregnant and wearing braces need to be extra careful to make sure they are getting their daily nutrients recommended by their doctor.
  • Proteins such as soften chicken or fish are good alternatives to meats like steak and beef jerky. For tips on what you can and can not eat with braces, click here.
  • Use warm salt water mouth rinse to fight against oral bacteria as salt helps develop the proper pH balance needed to keep your gums healthy. Mix 1/2 tsp. of salt with 1 cup of warm water and rinse your mouth 2-3 times daily for a few weeks to eliminate pregnancy gingivitis. 

Ready to Wear Braces While Pregnant?

Whether you have already started an orthodontic treatment plan or are interested in wearing braces while pregnant, there are several things to consider from dental hygiene to choosing the type of treatment method that would work best for you. Making your dental health a top priority is a the best way to ensure success with any orthodontic treatment, whether you are pregnant or not. Knowing that it is safe to wear braces or Invisalign while pregnant will give you peace of mind when going through treatment. Be sure to discuss with your orthodontist any questions or concerns you may have, and they will be happy to help in any way. 

If you are pregnant and ready to get started with orthodontic treatment, we are here to help guide you every step of the way. Fry Orthodontic Specialists offer a free consultation so you can learn more about our treatment plans and decide which method is the best option to meet your needs. We have many offices in the Kansas City area for you to choose from. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.