Pregnancy is an exciting time and, while your body is undergoing massive amounts of change, it does not mean that you should abandon your dental care routine. In fact, it is important that you take extra-great care of your teeth in order to avoid things like pregnancy gingivitis, and if you stick to your regular dental visit schedule during pregnancy, chances are you will need to have dental X-rays at some point. One question we often hear in the office is: are dental X-rays safe during pregnancy?
The short answer is…. Yes! Dental X-rays are safe to have during pregnancy, but there are some other factors you may want to consider as you are planning your dental care during this time.
If you’ve had dental X-rays in the past, you probably remember the dentist or hygienist placing a heavy apron over you before turning on the X-ray machine. This is a leaded apron that is designed to minimize exposure to radiation during the X-ray process.
The apron is long enough to cover the abdomen, which means a baby is protected during the X-ray process. It might seem like a nuisance or more trouble than it’s worth to wear it for such a short amount of time, but this is one of those situations where it’s better to be safe than sorry.
The apron will feel heavy when your dentist or hygienist puts it on, but it is safe to use at all stages of pregnancy.
You should notify your dentist as soon as possible after you become pregnant. You can work with your dentist to develop a treatment plan that will work for you and your baby. X-rays are critical to detecting dental issues that could become serious if they are not detected and treated.
The last thing you want is to have a newborn baby and a dental emergency on your hands because of something that could have been addressed during pregnancy.
Speaking of emergencies, if you have a dental emergency while you are pregnant, you will need to have X-rays. This is not usually something that can be postponed until after birth.
Dental care should not stop just because you are pregnant and dental X-rays are no exception. If you have additional questions or would like to discuss your specific situation with one of our dentists, please don’t hesitate to contact us to make an appointment. At Gulf Coast Dental, we work with moms-to-be all the time. We develop a treatment plan that meets their dental needs to keep their teeth healthy throughout their pregnancy.