Reconnecting Practicing Hygienists with the Nation's Leading Educators and Researchers.

Ensuring Health Throughout Life’s Stages

The risks posed by poor oral health in pregnant women are great, making support of effective self-care for this population particularly important.

While men are more likely to develop periodontal diseases than women, one group of women is particularly vulnerable to the effects of periodontitis—expectant mothers.1 Adverse maternal outcomes, such as preterm birth, low birth weight, growth restriction, and preeclampsia are linked to the presence of periodontitis in pregnant women. Though scientific study is still underway to pinpoint the exact mechanisms of these associations, the fact is pregnant women need to be especially diligent about maintaining their oral health, not only for their personal well-being but also for their babies’.

Philips Oral Healthcare supports clinicians in their efforts to provide high-quality care to their patients. The company recognizes the importance of a strong oral health care routine in reducing the risks associated with oral and systemic diseases and has developed innovative technology (eg, Philips Sonicare and AirFloss) that is clinically proven to markedly improve users’ oral health.2–4

In October 2014, Philips hosted the first of two 1-day symposia titled “Oral Health and the Connected Body” in Anaheim, California. It is from the seven presentations that the content of this continuing education series is derived. The second symposium will be held October 2 of this year, with the location to be announced soon.

Researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Dentistry—Kristin D. Dillow, RDH, MS, and Steven Offenbacher, DDS, PhD, MMSc—present a comprehensive overview of the literature that investigates the association between periodontitis and adverse pregnancy outcomes in this continuing education article. They also provide important takeaways for clinicians on how to best treat pregnant women in the dental setting to support the health of both mother and child.

Philips is dedicated to helping clinicians best serve their patients and improve treatment outcomes through product development and clinician and patient education. We hope you find this continuing education article and the rest of this series supportive of your quest to provide the highest level of patient care.


  1. Shiau HJ, Reynolds MA. Sex differences in destructive periodontal disease: a systematic review. J Periodontol. 2010;81:1379–1389.
  2. Hope CK, Petrie A, Wilson M. In vitro assessment of the plaque-removing ability of hydrodynamic shear forces produced beyond the bristles by 2 electric toothbrushes. J Periodontol. 2003;74:1017–1022.
  3. Moritis K, Jenkins W, Hefti A, Schmitt P, McGrady M. A randomized, parallel design study to evaluate the effects of a Sonicare and a manual toothbrush on plaque and gingivitis. J Clin Dent. 2008;19:64–68.
  4. Rmaile A, Carugo D, Capretto L, Aspiras M, et al. Removal of interproximal dental biofilms by high-velocity water microdrops. J Dent Res. 2014;93:68–71.

From Dimensions of Dental Hygiene. February 2015;13(2):54.


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