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Breastfeeding & Dental Work

Posted on January 13th, 2021

San Luis Obispo dentist, Dr. Michael Colleran at Michael Colleran DDS explains why dental work is not only safe but also important for breastfeeding mothers.If you’re a new mom or about to be one, you’re likely already used to putting your needs second to the needs of this beautiful new little person in your life – but maintaining good oral hygiene is still important for keeping you and your baby in tiptop shape. 

If something happens and you need dental work, it shouldn’t prevent you from breastfeeding regularly or from seeking the treatment you need. San Luis Obispo dentist Dr. Michael Colleran can explain how prioritizing your own health needs is safe and important during this stage of a woman’s life.

Dental Procedures Safe for Breastfeeding

You shouldn’t be surprised to hear that regular brushing and flossing are safe for breastfeeding mothers. In fact, it’s probably never felt more luxurious! Especially as you’re likely eating everything in sight (and perhaps indulging in sweet treats, too), it’s a good idea to keep those pearly whites as clean and healthy as possible. 

We know how difficult it is to take care of yourself with a new baby, but you deserve to be healthy, and a healthy mom is a better mom. Proactive measures are protective and important as your body goes through major hormonal changes. Not to mention, what mom has time for a lengthy dental procedure? Be proactive about your dental health right now to prevent complications later. 

If you are a breastfeeding mother in need of dental work, you’ll be happy to know most procedures won’t affect your milk or your baby. You will only need to pause breastfeeding for the short duration of your dental visits, and the following dental treatments are still safe while breastfeeding:

Dental Drugs Safe for Breastfeeding

Your body does an excellent job of processing medicine and other substances before they get to the baby via your milk, and the old practice of pump-and-dump is rarely recommended anymore. Most effects of drugs used in dentistry should wear off as soon as your procedure is over anyway, and you can be back to nursing your bub as soon as you’re home. The following drugs common in dental work are all safe for breastfeeding mothers:

  • Novocain
  • Local anesthetic 
  • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) 
  • General anesthesia
  • Antibiotics

More Information

Dr. Thomas Hale’s book “Medication and Mother’s Milk” is a great resource for more information on drug safety while breastfeeding. You should always share your full health history with your dentist and get your own pediatrician’s approval before receiving any dental treatment. Most dental work is totally compatible with a breastfeeding lifestyle. In fact, relaxing in the dentist’s chair may be the most quality alone time you get all week! 

Just remember, taking care of your own dental needs is essential for the overall health of you and your baby. Contact us today to make an appointment for any regular cleanings or special dental treatment you need.

The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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About Dr. Colleran

Dr. Colleran is a nationally renowned dental author and lecturer and an expert on laser dentistry. He has spoken across the country on laser dentistry and had articles appear in several professional journals. He is also sought after by dental manufacturers as a consultant for product evaluation and research. Dr. Colleran is an instructor for the Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry, which teaches LANAP and other laser dental procedures to dentists from across the globe.