Dry Mouth during Pregnancy
SUMMARY: Dry mouth is a common, yet annoying symptom that often pops up during pregnancy; however, there are several ways to combat this oral health issue.
Posted: April 1, 2013
Dry mouth (xerostomia) often occurs during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester. It can worsen during the night and be accompanied by a stuffy dry nose, cracked lips, headaches, hot flashes, indigestion, and metal cotton mouth (bitter, metallic taste in the mouth). These symptoms are caused by the major hormonal and metabolic changes that take place during pregnancy.
- Increased blood volume leads to extra fluids being processed through the kidneys, causing more frequent urination and dry mouth.
- Hormonal changes lead to reduced saliva flow, causing the mouth to become dry.
- An increased metabolic rate can cause excessive sweating, leading to a loss of body fluids and excessive thirst.
- Inadequate intake of water leads to dehydration.
- Gestational diabetes, like all forms of the disease, is associated with xerostomia because insulin abnormalities have indirect and direct effects on the function and structure of salivary glands.
- Specific medications cause dry mouth as a side effect.
- Drink lemonade or other citrus-based juices to reduce the metal taste in your mouth.
- Suck on ice chips to moisturize your mouth, which will also alleviate nausea from morning sickness.
- Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dry mouth in the morning.
- Keep a bottle of water on hand at all times to enable drinking adequate water throughout the day.
- Try coconut water to combat dry mouth — its vitamins and minerals aid in staving off dehydration.
- Avoid coffee, tea, and soda not only for general health reasons, but also because they are dehydrating.
- Use sugar-free gum and mints or mouth wetting lozenges, which will help increase saliva production in the mouth and prevent bad breath.
- If you wake up with metal cotton mouth, try using a humidifier in your bedroom at night.
Maintain Good Oral Health During Pregnancy
Dry mouth causes food particles to be trapped in the teeth, gums, and back of the mouth, a perfect environment for the growth of bacteria. Dry mouth itself is not serious if treated properly, however, when left untreated, it can lead to bad breath, tooth decay, or bleeding gums. Gingivitis can start as early as the second month of pregnancy, peak around the eighth month, and then improve after giving birth. It is believed that the high level of progesterone and changes in immune system reactions increase the growth of certain bacteria that cause gingivitis. It is important for pregnant women to take care of their oral health. Brushing with a soft bristle toothbrush twice a day, flossing teeth every day, and using an alcohol-free mouth rinse can help.
TheraBreath Offers the Ideal Solution
An essential health tip for every expectant mother is to avoid exposing her unborn baby to chemicals and additives. TheraBreath products are an ideal solution, because they are vegan, kosher, alcohol-free, sugar-free, and approved for people with diabetes.
If bacteria accumulates in the mouth, it can lead to many other oral health issues. Rinsing with one of TheraBreath's oxygenating, alcohol-free mouthwashes can help combat dry mouth and gingivitis. TheraBreath toothpaste and mouth rinses are great options that will help expectant mothers maintain top-notch oral health.