When we're reading about causes of bad breath pregnancy is not often listed, however many pregnant women do complain about having halitosis or about experiencing a persistent unpleasant or metallic taste in the mouth. Bad breath during pregnancy may result from hormonal changes or deteriorating dental health.
Sudden bad breath is always a sign that something has changed and it should prompt a self-assessment of recent changes in life style, diet or health. It may well be a sign that a visit to the dentist or doctor is in order. If you are pregnant and you suddenly develop bad breath pregnancy may be the indirect cause; however, it could also be a sign of health problems or the onset of gum disease. If careful and persistent oral care practices don't clear up the problem, see you doctor rather than assuming that it will go away on its own once the pregnancy is over.
It's well known that pregnant women have increased calcium needs and are at greater risk of tooth decay if these calcium needs are not met. When the diet is deficient in calcium, the mineral is taken from the teeth to provide for the developing baby. Tooth decay and gum disease often go hand in hand - when this process starts in the mouth, it can contribute to sudden bad breath. Pregnant women should always be under a doctor’s care and have regular dental checkups to catch problems early. Bad breath pregnancy problems are problematic to treat because of the difficulty with taking medications or undergoing medical procedures during this delicate time.
An unpleasant taste in the mouth may not mean that there is also bad breath. The taste can often be dealt with over the short term with lozenges or breath mints (choose sugar free if possible to reduce the chances of tooth decay). When there is true bad breath pregnancy does limit the measures you can safely take, though mouthwashes, which are not swallowed, are generally safe to use. Always read the label instructions carefully, and consult your doctor if you are in doubt or if you experience unexplained sudden bad breath.
R. Drysdale is a freelance writer with more than 25 years experience as a health care professional. She is a contributing editor to Bad Breath Remedies , a blog dedicated to the treatment of bad breath.