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Dental X-rays and Pregnancy: Are There Health Risks?

By Bruce Wilderman on October 14, 2014

A woman in the dental care suiteAmong the many precautions a woman should take during her pregnancy, dental x-rays are no exception. We have had numerous patients throughout the Philadelphia come to Artistic Expressions Dentistry to ask us about these matters. Ultimately, effective general and restorative dentistry is about promoting total wellness, and patient understanding and education is a major part of this. Let's take a moment to consider dental x-rays during pregnancy.

How safe are dental x-rays?

With such low radiation levels due to dental x-rays, it is fairly safe to have them done during your pregnancy. In addition, modern digital radiography involves far less radiation than traditional x-rays of the past, and patients are always given a protective smock to wear to help protect them from any additional radiation exposure.

Still, with your baby's health in mind, your dentist will take extra precaution to ensure the safety of you and your child. The fact that patients are so concerned about this shows how much they care about the well-being of their child.

Dental Care Is Important for a Healthy Child

Last year, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists suggested that, in addition to their prenatal exams, pregnant women should also see a dentist during their pregnancy for their routine cleanings and exams. It was also found that nearly 40 percent of women have some form of periodontal disease.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists suggest that pregnancy should not be used as an excuse for not seeing your dentist, and claim it has been proven that all facets of a dental check-up, including dental x-rays, are safe while pregnant.

Playing It Safe with Dental Visits: When to Visit While Pregnant

If you are planning on have dental work done during your pregnancy, it is best to have it done before the end of your second trimester. If you wait until further into your pregnancy, it may be difficult for you to be on your back for extended periods of time, making it more challenging for you and your dentist to complete your exams.

What to Do If You Suspect You're Pregnant and Are Going to the Dentist

Sometimes patients may suspect they're pregnant but the pregnancy is not confirmed. In such cases, there are a few precautions to take if you are visiting the dentist.

If you think you may be pregnant, inform your dentist of any symptoms you may be feeling. While your dentist cannot confirm if you are pregnant, he or she will be able to identify any risk factors for proceeding with dental x-rays and make choices accordingly.

If you have not taken a pregnancy test to confirm whether or not you are pregnant, it is best that you do so before deciding against getting dental x-rays. This will also alleviate any anxiety you have about moving forward with any dental procedures.

Talk with Your Dentist About Your Concerns

If you are pregnant and feeling anxiety about proceeding with dental x-rays, feel free to talk to your dentist about this. Your dentist will be able to show you how safe dental x-rays actually are during your pregnancy, but will also be sensitive if you would prefer not to move forward. Your well-being and your child's well-being are a worthwhile matter always.

Learn More About Dental Care Issues

If you would like to discuss more of your concerns about dental, we suggest that you contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. The entire team at Artistic Expressions Dentistry will be sure to answer all of your questions and address your concerns in full.

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400 Swamp Rd
Doylestown, PA 18901

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