Pregnancy is one of the highlights of a woman’s life. The thought of nurturing life for nine months is fascinating and brings joy to parents and those around them. As a woman’s body undergoes changes during this period, the question, ‘Are dental x-rays safe during pregnancy?’ arises often. However, being pregnant shouldn’t be a hindrance to maintaining proper dental hygiene. Medics will often encourage pregnant ladies to maintain their care of teeth, and this might call for regular dental x-rays. For this reason, dental x-rays are harmless to pregnant women. Here is why dental x-rays are essential during pregnancy.
Pregnancy is known to induce a surge in hormones. These hormones can affect women in different ways, their gums being one of the most affected places. Swollen gums make it easy for food to get trapped and harbor bacteria. This greatly increases the odds of the pregnant lady contracting a gum infection. This calls for the need for periodic screening of periodontal diseases. Undergoing a dental x-ray is a safe and sure way for a dentist to diagnose a gum infection and prescribe medication to treat it before it affects the baby.
The term ‘radiation’ is the most probable reason many people appear to be wary of x-rays. However, the fact is that only exposure to high-level radiation is dangerous to people. On the contrary, x-rays are known to produce very little radiation. The radiation levels or x-rays are not harmful to the fetus or the pregnant lady. According to research, only radiation of more than ten rads is linked to eye abnormalities and mental retardation. On the other hand, x-rays only release up to five rads, and 0.01 rads reach the fetus. The amount of radiation from x-rays is below that coming from sunlight. Therefore, dental x-ray radiations are safe for pregnant mothers.
Just like many medical procedures, a pregnant lady should take several safety precautions before and during a dental x-ray procedure. These precautions are meant to ensure the medical procedure is handled correctly to avoid any unforeseen medical emergencies. Below are some of the precautions that pregnant women should consider undertaking when scheduled for a dental x-ray procedure at a medical facility.
The first precaution before a dental x-ray procedure is informing the dentist of one’s pregnancy. This information is critical when setting up the radiation intensity and procedures to ensure the safety of the fetus as well as that of the mother.
Pregnant ladies should consider delaying non-essential dental treatments such as teeth whitening. In addition, when scheduled for a dental x-ray, it is essential to avoid other unnecessary dental procedures that might lead to complications.
Finally, wearing a lead apron and collar is important since they shield unnecessary radiation from entering the body.
Dental x-rays are harmless during pregnancy. The amount of radiation emitted is within acceptable levels to maintain a healthy pregnancy. Furthermore, dental x-rays are a vital idea for the diagnosis of dental issues such as gum diseases. This will prevent any dental diseases from spreading to the fetus during the pregnancy.