If morning sickness makes you vomit a lot or gives you bad acid reflux, your tooth enamel may be open to damage. To avoid eroding enamel, be careful how you treat your teeth after you throw up.

How Morning Sickness Affects Tooth Enamel

When you vomit, your teeth may be exposed to stomach acids. Like any other acid, these substances can lead to dental erosion, damaging the enamel on your teeth and sometimes causing tooth decay. If you have mild morning sickness or reflux, this may not be an issue. However, if you throw up a lot or suffer from reflux for a continuous period, the acid may damage your teeth in certain circumstances. To minimise the harmful effects of stomach acid, it's worth taking care over how you clean your teeth after you vomit.

Don't Clean Your Teeth Immediately After Throwing Up

Although it's tempting to clean your teeth immediately after vomiting to get rid of the nasty taste in your mouth, you shouldn't do this. According to Dentistry IQ, stomach acid softens tooth enamel. If you brush when the enamel is soft immediately after acid exposure, you may remove some enamel from the tooth's surface. Plus, if you clean your teeth repeatedly straight after bouts of sickness, you'll make things worse.

 According to the Better Health Channel, you should wait a minimum of an hour after vomiting before you brush your teeth. This allows time for the acid to leave your teeth.

Do Keep Your Mouth Fresh

You may need to find a way to freshen up your mouth after a bout of morning sickness, especially if the taste of vomit in your mouth makes you feel sick again. Although you shouldn't clean your teeth straight away, you can try the following tips to clean out your mouth:

  • Rinse your mouth out with water and then swish with a fluoridated mouthwash.
  • Put a tiny amount of fluoridated toothpaste on your finger and wipe it over your teeth before rinsing with water.
  • Put a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in a glass of water and use it like a mouthwash, if you can stomach the taste. This is particularly useful for acid attacks, as the bicarb neutralises acid and makes it less harmful.

Tip: If the taste of your regular toothpaste makes your morning sickness worse when you brush your teeth, try switching to a more neutral brand with a less minty taste.

For more information and tips on caring for your teeth during pregnancy, contact a local dental clinic like Genesis Dental