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If it seems like no part of your body remains unaffected by pregnancy, you’re right. From the earliest days of conception, your body’s hormones undergo significant changes. You’re probably familiar with several of these changes already, such as a heightened sense of smell, nausea, and fatigue. What many women don’t realize is that pregnancy hormones affect their oral health as well. The most significant change to oral health for pregnant women is the condition of their gums.
Pregnancy and the Increased Risk of Gum Disease
According to the American Dental Association, approximately half of all pregnant women develop gingivitis before they give birth. Gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease most common between the second and eighth months of pregnancy. It normally goes away after delivery, but not always. Some women who develop gingivitis during pregnancy go on to develop more advanced gum disease. This can happen when they don’t make a special effort to brush and floss their teeth twice a day and continue receiving regular professional check-ups.
The production of estrogen and progesterone, two essential hormones in the female body, significantly increases during pregnancy. This causes more blood flow to the gums, which in turn causes greater sensitivity and an overreaction to bacteria and plaque already present in the mouth. The higher than usual amount of estrogen and progesterone cause inflammation, bleeding, and tenderness of the gums. Eventually, this can lead to the loss of bone and teeth. It’s no reason to become alarmed, but we encourage you to pay close attention to your oral health during pregnancy and to report any concerns as soon as possible.
How Morning Sickness Can Affect the Health of Your Teeth
Nausea and vomiting are a fact of life for many pregnant women and either symptom can strike you at any time of day. The stomach acid present in vomit can damage your teeth, particularly if you’re unfortunate enough to struggle with persistent vomiting during pregnancy. You can help to prevent acid erosion of your teeth by rinsing your mouth out with water, a diluted mouthwash, or a mixture of one teaspoon of baking soda and one cup of water. For the most effective results, swish and spit first and then brush your teeth approximately half an hour later.
What to Do When Brushing Your Teeth Makes Your Gag
It may feel disheartening to read that pregnancy can increase oral health issues when the very thought of brushing your teeth makes you feel nauseated. You will need to try different approaches to see what works best for you. Perhaps using a different flavor of toothpaste will decrease gagging sensations. You could also try brushing at times of day when you tend to feel less nauseated or using a toothbrush with a smaller sized head. Stay persistent until you find something that works for you to decrease the likelihood of developing gum disease or tooth decay during your pregnancy.
The Importance of a Healthy Diet
You already know that a healthy diet that includes ample amounts of fruits, vegetables, and protein and few sweets is essential for the proper development of your growing baby. However, it’s just as important for your own oral health. Although it can be challenging to resist sweets when your body is sending you strange food cravings, do your best not to give in to them. If you find that you must have something sweet, try to brush your teeth as soon as possible afterwards to prevent the sugar from turning into bacteria in your mouth.
Dental Check-Ups and Treatment Are Safe During Pregnancy
If you normally visit the dentist every six months, you would be due for at least one check-up before you give birth. It’s important to keep this appointment so your teeth and gums can remain as healthy as possible for the duration of your pregnancy. The American Dental Association also states that pregnant women don’t need to delay necessary dental procedures such as crowns and fillings because these restorations can help to prevent gum disease and infections that can cause additional problems later. However, it’s probably best to wait to schedule any cosmetic procedures until after you have the baby.
Request Your Free Consultation Today
Dr. Marina Funtik of Oasis Prosthodontics is happy to provide guidance and treatment to maximize your oral health during pregnancy. You may complete a contact form or call her office at 719-574-2417 to request an appointment. Our entire staff looks forward to meeting you and providing you with exceptional care during your pregnancy and beyond.
PERSONAL MANTRA: "Dedicate yourself to your calling, whatever that may be, and give it 110 percent. Don't be afraid and follow your passion." - Dr. Marina Funtik
Dr. Marina Funtik is all smiles - which is only appropriate, considering she's dedicated her career to beautifying other people's smiles.
Dr. Funtik, a PPCC alum, was named a local Woman of Influence today (11/16/16) by the Colorado Springs Business Journal. The annual award names 13 women who embody the spirit of mentorship and leadership, serving as role models for other women.
A native of Slavakia, Dr. Funtik started her career as a dental assisting student, earning her certificate and going on to St. Lawrence University in New York (Phi Beta Kappa) and University of Connecticut Dental School, where she developed the specialty of prosthodontics. But, even as she studied out east, she longed to return to Colorado Springs.
Eventually, she made her way back to the Springs. Nine months ago she opened Oasis Prosthodontics -- a regional leader in dental implants, and she gives back to PPCC by regularly hiring our dental assistants from our program.
Prior to being named a Woman of Influence, Dr. Funtik was named a Rising Star by Colorado Springs Business Journal in 2015 and was voted by her peers a TOP Dentist in Colorado Springs Style Magazine in 2016.
Original Article: http://www.csbj.com/2016/11/16/2016-women-influence-dr-marina-funtik/
A native of Slovakia, Marina Funtik first came to Colorado Springs — and the United States — as a dental assistant student at Pikes Peak Community College in 2000.
“Everything was so big — the cars, the pizza,” she said of her first impressions of the U.S.
After she received her dental assistant certificate from PPCC, Funtik moved to the East Coast for about a dozen years, where she studied prosthodontics and completed her doctorate in dental medicine.
Her love of Colorado Springs, however, brought her back, and just nine months ago Funtik opened her own practice, Oasis Prosthodontics.
Funtik said she had female doctors in her family who acted as role models, and she knew early on that was the path she wanted to take.
“In my country, I went to medical high school,” she said. “It’s a little different from here. Education is more specialized. I was a lab technician in high school.”
Funtik now employs five, but never intended to have her own practice.
“I wanted to become a partner somewhere,” she said. “But I realized, to get to where I wanted to be, I had to go out on my own. I did that after a couple years of finding myself.”
PERSONAL MANTRA: “DEDICATE YOURSELF TO YOUR CALLING, WHATEVER THAT MAY BE, AND GIVE IT 110 PERCENT. DON’T BE AFRAID AND FOLLOW YOUR PASSION.”
Starting her own business was far more intimidating than going into medicine, she said.
“It was scary. I took a lot of business classes on the weekends. … You don’t learn a lot of business in regular school or medical school,” she said. “Dentistry is easy compared to business.”
Dr. John Agar nominated Funtik for the Women of Influence recognition.
“Marina’s work ethic is unsurpassed and her integrity is exemplary,” Agar said. “She has trained and worked as a dental assistant and laboratory technician. She understands the contributions of everyone on the dental team and her first priority is always the best possible care for her patients.”
Funtik excels at everything she sets her mind to, Agar said.
“Dr. Funtik’s strength of character is also unexcelled,” he said. “I used her as chief resident more than both her fellow residents combined because of her leadership and organizational skills.”
Aimee Grable, a marketing consultant with AdPro 360, also nominated Funtik.
“I’m accustomed to working with some of the best and brightest people in Colorado Springs, from a variety of backgrounds and industries, who exhibit perseverance and embrace their long list of accomplishments,” Grable said. “I believe Dr. Funtik has a special spark that needs to be recognized. When I thought of all the strong women I’m surrounded by, Dr. Funtik exemplified initiative, leadership and dedication. … Her ambition, intelligence and accomplishments complement precisely the stellar community of past recipients and make her highly deserving of the opportunity.”
Funtik’s achievements prove the efforts of a single person can make a difference, Grable said.
“She is deeply committed and involved in her practice, with her staff, patients and communities,” Grable said.
Funtik said “it’s a great honor” to be recognized as a Woman of Influence.
“I’m grateful and blessed to have people around me who make it fun to go to work everyday,” she said. “I say I don’t have a job, I have a calling. Even if wasn’t getting paid, I would probably still go to work.”
Funtik said she named her practice Oasis Prosthodontics because she wants her business “to be place of laughter, warmth and sunshine — a place where people can feel good.”
Her staff, whom she calls the Oasis Girls, helped her succeed, she said.
“I want to thank them for being so amazing and such a great team. Patients tell us how well we work together, and I couldn’t do this without them.”
— Bryan Grossman