Good Dental Health Is Key During Pregnancy

Pharmacy Times, Volume 0, 0

A periodontal examination should be part of a woman's prenatalcare, according to the results of a study that were publishedrecently in the Journal of Periodontology. The study included870 pregnant women at low risk for preterm birth and lowbirth weight. At the study's onset, all of the women received afull-mouth periodontal examination. The women were then separatedinto a control group and a treatment group.

The treatment group received periodontal therapy before28 weeks of gestation and then maintenance therapy every2 to 3 weeks until delivery. Each participant was providedwith toothbrushes and chlorhexidine and was told to rinseonce a day with 0.12% chlorhexidine until delivery. The controlgroup was checked 2 to 3 times during pregnancy andwas given repeated periodontal examinations after 30weeks of gestation to evaluate changes in periodontal status.The results of the study indicated that women with gingivitis(the earliest form of gum disease) who received dentaltherapy before 28 weeks of gestation had a considerablylower occurrence of preterm low-birth-weight infants, comparedwith women who did not receive therapy.