Oral Health Care for Women

Oral Health Care for Women

Oral Health Care for Women

Good oral health is a gateway towards perfect physical harmony. Good oral hygiene is as important for men as it is for women and children.

Women are more prone to oral health issues because of the changing hormone levels in their lifespan.

Stages in women life and their effect on oral health

  1. Puberty

Hormones such as estrogen and progesterone are excreted during puberty. These hormones lead to redness, bleeding and swelling of gums.

Canker sores are also some of the symptoms that some women experience during menstrual cycle.

  • Taking birth control pills

Long term use of birth control pills leads to severe gum disease.

Women taking oral contraceptive pills have delay in dental healing after tooth extraction.

  • Pregnancy

During pregnancy hormones level go up and down. On account of this, pregnant women experience gum disease which sometimes results in loosening of teeth. Some pregnant women experience morning sickness which leads to erosion of outer layer of teeth.

  • Menopause

During menopause there is a decrease in salivary flow which leads to dental decay, oral malodor and swollen gums.

At this stage women might also face osteoporosis (weakening of bones). Weak bones accelerate gum diseases.

Gum disease can have an adverse impact on overall health also. Harmful bacteria from the gums can enter into the bloodstream and may cause other health related issues like heart diseases, diabetes mellitus, and stroke.

Furthermore, studies have also confirmed that patient’s with poor oral hygiene have a high risk of COVID infection.

Dental Tips for Women

  1. Brush twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste and soft bristled toothbrush. This routine should also be maintained by denture wearers. They should also clean their dentures two times a day.
  2. Floss at least once a day. Floss can be done with a manual dental floss or a powered dental flosser.
  3.  It is very important to clean tongue with a tongue scraper twice a day as Tongue harbors harmful micro-organism which leads to oral malodor.
  4. Do not forget to rinse mouth with plain water after eating any meal as this prevents food particles from sticking to mouth.
  5. Warm saline gargles twice a day provide good gum care and also prevent COVID infection.
  6. Traditionally women have the habit of removing food particles stuck between tooth with bobby pins. This should be avoided. This can traumatize the gums.
  7. It is important to change Tooth brushes after every 3 months.
  8. It is strongly advised that oral health kit should not be shared between each other, this can lead to transfer of harmful micro-organisms.
  9. It is a common practice among Indian women to hide their medical issues. Women undergoing chemotherapy should make sure to consult their dentist, so that they do not face any gums or teeth issues.
  10. Women are multi-talented and have to handle multiple tasks at the same time. Research has found that clenching of teeth, when involved in stressful activities has detrimental effect on our dental health. Performing physical exercises and yoga in the open air in mornings or evenings helps release stress.
  11. Efforts should be taken to eat fiber richfood like carrot, radish or fruits like apples after sugary food or acidic drinks. This prevents tooth damage.
  12.  Avoid drinking alcohol and eating tobacco.
  13. Citrus fruits like lemons, oranges and grapes prevents bleeding gums. But these fruits should always be taken in moderation,excessive intake of these fruits leads to teeth erosion.
  14. it is advised to drink sugary carbonated drink with straw as it reduces the chance of tooth damage.
  15. Visit your dentist at regular intervals.

Advise for pregnant women

Every pregnant woman should visit their dentist for a check up in their first trimester (1st to 3rd month)

2nd trimester (that is 4th to 6th month) of pregnancy is the safest period for any dental treatment.

It is very important for pregnant ladies to  visit the dentist after the pregnancy is over.

Research has shown that if pregnant women have poor oral hygiene this can lead to malnutritioned infants.

If the pregnant women are suffering from pregnancy induced diabetes mellitus, then there are high chances that pregnant mother might transfer the strain of caries induced bacteria to the fetus.

During pregnancy women should consume calcium rich foods like milk, eggs and paneer, because calcification of baby teeth starts in utero.

Along with calcium rich foods, pregnant women should also consume folic rich foods like spinach, legumes and beetroot, this reduces the risk of cleft lip and palate in infant.

Advise for breast feeding mothers

Every effort should be taken to breast feed the infants exclusively for 6 months.

This leads to proper alignment of teeth in infants, lower rate of cavities and also lowers the rate of unhygienic habits like thumb or finger sucking.

After breast feeding, it is always advised to clean the gum pads with a wet gauze pad or wet clean cotton cloth after every feeding.

During breast feeding, mothers should not neglect their own oral hygiene.

Hormones do interfere in maintaining a healthy oral hygiene but a. Regular dental checkup will help in maintaining a healthy yet beautiful smile.

Special Tip for women and their family during festive season

With Christmas and New Year festivities about to begin, women have to juggle multiple tasks.

  • When occupied with hectic activities we skip brushing of teeth after dinner but we should take extra care of our oral health during festival season and should strictly follow the daily routine of brushing twice a day.
  • It is advised to consume sweets before meal
  • It is very important to stay hydrated which prevents dry mouth
  • Do not use teeth as tools for cutting tape during packing of gifts

Have a safe, healthy, smiling,happy,joyous, and colorful Holi.


                                                                                      Dr Riya Gupta

                                                                                      (Dental Surgeon)

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