Just the thought of a toothache can cause shivers to run down your spine. It’s really one of the worst pains that you can experience and can heavily impact your life. So what do you do when you get a toothache when you’re pregnant? There are very few painkillers that you can take because they are dangerous for your developing baby.

Unfortunately, toothaches are quite common in pregnant women, even if you usually have very good dental health. This is thanks to the hormonal changes happening in your body. The higher levels of certain hormones can make you a lot more sensitive to pain, especially in areas like your gums.

Causes of toothache when you are pregnant

All of the usual problems apply to pregnant women too. These include cavities, inflammation on the gums, abscesses and a sensitivity to hot or cold. If you already have any of these before you fall pregnant, it’s important to talk to your doctor and dentist about how you can combat them now that you are about to become more sensitive.
Another major culprit of toothache is nerve damage. The buccal nerve is a main nerve running through your face and can become weakened and highly sensitive. This can cause intense pain in the mouth.

IMPORTANT: A great tip for relieving toothache when you are pregnant is to look for a mouthwash or tea that has propolis in it. This natural substance has painkilling and anti-inflammatory properties that are safe for both you and your baby.

Steps you can take to avoid toothache when pregnant

The basics will always apply. Having a good dental hygiene routine is essential. This includes brushing twice a day with a good toothpaste, flossing and using mouthwash. These will help to avoid problems and relieve pain if a problem develops but isn’t too intense.

It’s also a good idea to watch what you eat. There are certain foods that can cause toothache, and you can be more sensitive to them when you are pregnant. Be sure to pay attention to when a toothache occurs and if it could be triggered by something you just ate or drank.

You can also make regular trips to the dentist throughout your pregnancy. Experts recommend that you go once a trimester at least. This way you can find any potential problems before they get too big and are causing a lot of pain.

How to relieve toothache

Once the dreaded pain hits, you can’t head for the medicine cabinet as you would when you aren’t pregnant. The good news is, there are several remedies you can try that are safe for both you and your baby. We’ve already mentioned a tea or mouthwash that contains propolis.

Another option is to apply a cold compress to your cheek, over the affected area. You can also get mouthwashes that contain hydrogen peroxide, antiseptics or salt water. These will help reduce swelling from abscesses, inflammation and pain.

Bleeding gums

When you are pregnant, your blood circulation increases, which can lead to your gums bleeding on a reasonably regular basis. There isn’t much you can do about this and the problem should resolve itself after you give birth.

However, it’s important that you don’t stop brushing your teeth or flossing as a result of this bleeding.

Can you take anesthesia for dental treatments when pregnant?

The simple answer is yes you can. However, this is only after careful scrutiny from your doctors to ensure that having the procedure is definitely the right course of action. It’s essential that your dentist and gynecologist consult to ensure that you and baby are both kept safe if you need to have a tooth extracted or another kind of dental procedure.

All medications, especially the likes of anti-inflammatories and antibiotics, must be prescribed by your doctor if you absolutely need them. Always take the time to talk to your gynecologist before any pains you are feeling become too intense. There may be a way to avoid procedures that are potentially harmful to you and your baby.

Readers’ questions:

Can toothache be a sign that I’m pregnant?

Some women do experience a higher sensitivity in their teeth right at the beginning of the gestational process. However, this is not considered a sign that you are pregnant.