Pregnancy is a beautiful phase in a woman’s life, but for some, it brings in lots of unpleasant symptoms that might make the early months difficult. I have heard some mums say that for them nausea and vomiting lasted throughout the 9 months not allowing them to eat well. Now, that’s bad! Some again have mentioned excessive salivation during the early months. What is it? What causes it? Excessive salivation during pregnancy or Ptyalism or Sialorrhea as it is medically referred to, is often normally associated with nausea and morning sickness and has some benefits. It helps balance the acidity, aids digestion and acts as a lubricant too! In fact, it even acts as an antibacterial agent and helps prevent tooth decay.
Now let’s understand this question: Is excess salivation normal when you’re pregnant or is it something to worry about?
Is Salivating During Pregnancy Dangerous?
“No”, excessive saliva during the early months of pregnancy is not harmful either to you or your baby. Under normal circumstances, you generally don’t have excess saliva in the mouth. But when you’re pregnant and you suddenly feel that there is an excess of saliva in the mouth, you tend to worry. So, you may either be producing more and swallowing less or a combination of both. Some women mention that when they feel nauseated, they also feel that they salivate more. And some have so much that they actually have to spit it out!
This is not to panic you. The good news is, the condition gradually goes away after the first few weeks. So, relax! Unless there a serious reason underlying it, there is absolutely nothing to worry about.
Let’s look at some reasons that cause excessive salivation among some women, especially when they are pregnant.
Causes of Excessive Saliva During Pregnancy:
Nausea: Some women may swallow less when they feel nauseated in the early weeks of pregnancy. This may be one of the reasons why there is excess buildup of saliva in the mouth. It is, in fact, more common among women who suffer from severe morning sickness, which is termed as hyperemesis gravidarum.
Irritants: Sometimes, smoke could be responsible for excess saliva as could oral infections and even tooth decay. Sometimes, exposure to pesticides or medications that has mercury could be responsible as well.
Hormonal changes: There is no clear explanation as to why hormonal changes during pregnancy might cause excess salivation among women, but doctors believe that it could be one of the reasons for excess salivation among some women.
Besides these factors, heartburn that is common during pregnancy could also be responsible for excess saliva secretion. Is there a way to control excess secretion?
Treatment for excessive saliva during pregnancy:
When you experience excess saliva in the mouth when you are pregnant, make sure you discuss this with your doctor in the next visit. They can help you treat nausea, vomiting and heartburn which in turn can reduce the secretion of saliva. Besides, here are some measures that might help:
- Avoid consuming foods that are high on starch and carbohydrate.
- If you are into smoking, you might want to cut down or if possible give it up completely. It not only increases saliva production, but poses high risk for you and your baby.
- Eat small meals in smaller intervals and make sure the diet is balanced.
- Sometimes, gum and mouth problems could trigger excess saliva secretion. Visit a dentist to rule that out or if that is the cause, your dentist can prescribe antibiotics. Besides, use a natural mouthwash several times a day and remember to brush after every meal.
- In case, the excess saliva is due to Hyperemesis Gravidarum, a severe form of morning sickness, your doctor can prescribe medications to control it.
- Remember to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water, not just to prevent excess salivation but for your overall well-being during those 9 months.
Sometimes, it is a good idea to divert your mind from this issue by chewing sugarless chewing gums or candies. No, it doesn’t reduce the excess secretion but makes sure you swallow the excess that is produced. Some women also claim that sucking an ice cube makes the mouth numb and saliva secretion is reduced.
Excess secretion can be quite annoying especially when it gets added to the list of inconveniences that you experience during the first trimester. If swallowing makes you more nauseated, spit it out. But the good news is, excess salivation gradually disappears around the end of the first trimester.
Pregnancy is a time when the body undergoes tremendous transformation thanks to the fluctuating hormones. It is only obvious that in the initial months, we feel overwhelmed. But as we move past the first trimester, it gets easier. Remember to consult your doctor if you think any symptom could be a cause for worry. Apart from that, stay safe…these 9 months are sheer bliss!