Teeth are beautiful, and women need to be extra careful about taking care of their smiles during certain stages of life. The problem can be hormonal changes that contribute to periodontal disease, which is commonly known as gum disease. Hormonal changes can make the disease worse by affecting the blood supply to the gums. Changes can also exaggerate the body’s response to irritation caused by plaque on the teeth.
Women who take oral contraceptives often have a problem with inflamed gums. Your dentist needs to know if you are taking birth control pills. The effect of an oral contraceptive can be lessened by some medications, such as antibiotics, that the dentist might give you.
Women may experience discomfort during menstruation. Your dentist could prescribe special cleanings, gum treatment or topical anesthetics to ease discomfort from swollen or bleeding gums, lesions, canker sores or swollen salivary glands.
Elevated hormone levels during pregnancy can affect gingivitis causing red, puffy or tender gums. This happens especially during the second to eighth months. More frequent cleanings during your second trimester or early third trimester may be your dentist’s recommendation to help avoid these problems.