Can You Get Braces During Pregnancy?

Pregnant woman in white lace sleeveless dress standing beside brown wooden crib photo

Navigating pregnancy comes with a whirlwind of do’s and don’ts, leaving many expectant mothers pondering whether adding “getting braces” to their list is a wise move. It’s a time when health and wellness take center stage, and understandably, oral health is no exception. After all, a radiant smile and good dental health play pivotal roles not just in aesthetics but in overall well-being too.

The question, “Can you get braces while pregnant?” is more common than you might think. With a growing awareness of the importance of oral health, many soon-to-be moms are considering orthodontic treatments during pregnancy. This article aims to shed light on the safety, benefits, and considerations of undergoing orthodontic treatment such as braces during this significant phase of life.

As we navigate the complexities of braces during pregnancy, we’ll explore not just the clinical advice but also the personal reassurances needed to make informed decisions. So, whether you’re mulling over adjustments to your dental care routine or contemplating orthodontic treatment, let’s dive into understanding how braces fit into the pregnancy puzzle.

The Safety of Getting Braces During Pregnancy

When it comes to navigating pregnancy, every decision, especially regarding health and wellness, is made with an extra layer of caution. The question of safety naturally arises when considering braces during pregnancy. The good news? Yes, you can get braces while pregnant, but with a few important considerations to ensure both your well-being and that of your unborn child.

First and foremost, dental treatments, including braces, are generally considered safe during pregnancy. Orthodontic care, specifically, doesn’t directly affect pregnancy, as it primarily concerns the external adjustment of teeth alignment. However, the key is ensuring thorough communication between your orthodontist and prenatal care provider. This collaboration ensures that any treatment plan is tailored to avoid stress and minimize risks during your pregnancy.

One crucial aspect to consider is the timing of orthodontic appointments and procedures. While dental X-rays are safe when necessary precautions are taken, such as using a lead apron, it’s often recommended to limit exposure, especially during the first trimester. Hence, orthodontic evaluations and adjustments are usually scheduled with these safety guidelines in mind.

Additionally, pregnancy induces hormonal changes that can affect your gums and teeth, making them more susceptible to inflammation and sensitivity. A well-informed orthodontist will consider these changes when planning your treatment, choosing the most comfortable and least invasive options.

While braces are safe during pregnancy, the approach should be cautious and well-coordinated. Proper planning and open communication ensure that orthodontic treatment contributes positively to your oral health without compromising your pregnancy’s safety.

4 Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment During Pregnancy

While the primary concern for most pregnant women considering braces is safety, it’s equally important to highlight the myriad benefits orthodontic treatment can offer during this special time. Beyond achieving a straighter smile, braces can significantly contribute to both oral health and overall pregnancy wellness.

1. Improved Oral Hygiene

Pregnancy increases the risk of gum disease and tooth decay due to hormonal changes that affect the gums and teeth. Straighter teeth are easier to clean, reducing the risk of plaque buildup and gum disease. Braces can, therefore, play a crucial role in maintaining optimal oral health during pregnancy.

2. Prevention of Long-term Dental Issues

Misaligned teeth can lead to uneven wear, jaw pain, and other dental issues that might require more invasive treatments down the line. By addressing these issues during pregnancy, you’re not only improving your oral health but also preventing potential future problems that could be more challenging to manage with a newborn.

3. Boost in Self-esteem

Pregnancy involves numerous physical and emotional changes, and for some, a brighter, more confident smile can significantly boost self-esteem and overall mood. The psychological benefits of feeling good about your smile should not be underestimated, especially during a time that can be as challenging as it is joyful.

4. Preparing for Post-Pregnancy Life

Pregnancy can be a period of preparation and anticipation, making it an ideal time to invest in yourself. By starting orthodontic treatment during pregnancy, you’re taking steps to ensure you emerge from this transformative phase not just as a new mother, but with a new smile, ready to face the challenges and joys of parenthood head-on.

The benefits of getting braces while pregnant extend beyond cosmetic enhancements to include significant improvements in oral health and well-being. With careful planning and professional guidance, orthodontic treatment can be a valuable part of your pregnancy journey.

Considerations and Precautions

Embarking on orthodontic treatment during pregnancy requires not just a nod from your dentist but also careful consideration of the unique changes and challenges that come with pregnancy. While the benefits are plentiful, there are specific considerations and precautions to ensure the process is smooth, safe, and beneficial for both you and your baby.

  • Hormonal Changes: Pregnancy dramatically alters hormone levels, affecting various parts of the body, including the mouth. These changes can lead to increased gum sensitivity and a higher risk of periodontal disease. It’s vital to maintain meticulous oral hygiene and have regular check-ups with your orthodontist to manage these risks effectively.
  • Dental Visits and Comfort: As your pregnancy progresses, lying in a dental chair for extended periods can become uncomfortable. Discuss with your orthodontist the possibility of shorter, more frequent visits to accommodate your comfort and manage any pregnancy-related discomfort.
  • Nutrition and Oral Health: Pregnancy cravings and dietary changes can have a significant impact on oral health. With braces, it’s crucial to avoid certain foods that can damage orthodontic appliances or contribute to tooth decay. Prioritizing a balanced diet and being mindful of food choices will support both your orthodontic treatment and pregnancy nutrition.
  • Emergency Care: It’s important to have a plan in place for emergency orthodontic care, should you need it. Knowing how to address minor issues at home and when to contact your orthodontist can prevent unnecessary stress and complications.
  • Postpartum Adjustments: Anticipate possible adjustments to your orthodontic care plan after your baby is born. Discuss with your orthodontist the potential need for schedule changes or treatment modifications to accommodate your new role as a mother.

Taking these considerations and precautions into account will not only help manage the orthodontic treatment during pregnancy but also contribute to a more comfortable and successful outcome. Open communication with your orthodontist and prenatal care provider is key to navigating this journey safely.

Timing and Treatment Planning

Deciding on the perfect timing for starting orthodontic treatment during pregnancy is crucial for ensuring the safety and comfort of both the expectant mother and the baby. Proper treatment planning takes into account not just the goal of a straighter smile but also the unique timeline and considerations of pregnancy.

Early Pregnancy Considerations: During the first trimester, many women experience nausea and heightened sensitivity, which can make dental appointments more challenging. While it’s generally safe to begin orthodontic treatment, the timing of certain procedures, especially those requiring X-rays, might be strategically planned for later stages.

Second Trimester Ideal Start: Many healthcare providers and orthodontists recommend the second trimester as the ideal time to start orthodontic treatment. Nausea tends to subside, and it’s generally more comfortable for the mother to undergo dental procedures. This period also allows enough time to adjust to the braces before the baby’s arrival.

Later Pregnancy Planning: Starting treatment late in the third trimester can present challenges, such as discomfort during long appointments. However, consultations and planning can certainly take place, preparing for a swift start to treatment after the baby is born.

Customizing Your Treatment Plan: Every pregnancy is unique, and so is every orthodontic treatment plan. Discussions with your orthodontist should include your pregnancy timeline, any symptoms or conditions you’re experiencing, and how these factors might influence treatment. Adjustments to the types of braces used or the treatment approach can be made to ensure maximum comfort and safety.

Postpartum Adjustments: It’s also important to consider the post-birth period in your treatment plan. New mothers will have a significantly different schedule, and appointments will need to accommodate the demands of caring for a newborn.

Timing and thoughtful treatment planning are key to successfully integrating orthodontic treatment into your pregnancy journey. A collaborative approach between you, your orthodontist, and your prenatal care provider will ensure that your treatment not only achieves its goals but does so in harmony with your pregnancy and postpartum life.


Navigating the journey of pregnancy is filled with decisions about what’s best for both the expectant mother and the baby. Among these decisions is the consideration of orthodontic treatment, such as braces. Understanding the safety, benefits, and necessary precautions makes it clear that not only is it possible to pursue a healthier, straighter smile during pregnancy, but it can also be a proactive step towards maintaining overall oral health and well-being.

The key takeaways for any expectant mother considering braces are the importance of timing, the necessity of open communication with healthcare providers, and the adaptability of treatment plans to fit individual needs and stages of pregnancy. With the right planning and care, braces during pregnancy can offer significant benefits without compromising the health of the mother or baby.

As we’ve explored the FAQs and addressed common concerns, it’s evident that the journey to achieving a beautiful smile through braces doesn’t have to pause because of pregnancy. Instead, with informed decisions and expert guidance, it can be a seamless part of this special time.

For those pondering, “Can I get braces while pregnant?” the answer is a resounding yes, with the caveat of personalized care and attention to detail. This journey, like pregnancy itself, is deeply personal and unique, deserving of a thoughtful and customized approach to ensure the best outcomes for both mother and child.


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