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A new study suggests that great oral health actually begins before birth. While the medical community is aware that baby teeth develop during pregnancy, emerging information gives us additional clues as to exactly which nutrients are best for pregnant women (and their children). More than just building healthy teeth, certain supplements will also help prevent future cavities.
As we learn more information about vitamin D, its impact on health feels more and more significant. Deficiency in vitamin D during pregnancy leads to defects in the baby’s tooth enamel, which builds a weaker tooth. Once the baby is born, the child is likely to see more cavities and other dental problems.
Additionally, a 2010 study suggests that high doses of vitamin D help prevent complications like gestational diabetes, premature delivery, high blood pressure, infections, and preeclampsia. While this is still being researched and we don’t recommend extremely high doses of any supplement, the findings suggest interesting links between health and this versatile vitamin. The best bet? Making sure you get enough vitamin D to encourage healthy growth – for both your baby and yourself.
Safely Getting Vitamin D During Your Pregnancy
- Don’t overdo sun exposure – While exposing your skin to sunlight is a simple (and free) way to get some vitamin D, moms-to-be should remember that their skin is extra sensitive during pregnancy. Avoid the hours of strongest midday sunlight, and cover up during the summer months.
- Be careful with fish – While fish like salmon and tuna are great sources of Vitamin D, concerns over mercury levels should encourage special care. Limit the amount of canned tuna you eat, and always be aware of potential mercury in fish in your diet.
- Vitamins are the best bet – Vitamin D supplements are the safest, most easily-controlled way to be sure you get the nutrients that you (and your baby) need.
If you ever have questions about oral health during pregnancy, get in touch. Extra exams are never a bad idea while pregnant, as your risk of gingivitis is heightened.