As more people consciously choose to plan a family, it is important to be aware of and understand the potential impacts of environmental and lifestyle factors on your new child. Natural fertility rates have declined due to ageing and exposure to hormone disrupting toxins that are increasingly found in our environment. Common reproductive and genotoxins such as BPA and mercury are affecting human fertility rates, damaging DNA in the sperm and egg and also passing through the placenta into the developing baby’s tissues.
As the baby develops it is vulnerable to exposure from toxins via umbilical cord blood and breast milk. During the early stages of planning a pregnancy it is recommended that both prospective parents should undergo a full dental rehabilitation to remove any mercury amalgam fillings, replace any other metal restorations and eliminate sources of infection. It is also recommended that any X-rays are done 12 months ahead of planning the pregnancy to avoid the risks of foetal radiation exposure. Laser + Holistic Dental aims to avoid the need for invasive dental procedures after conception has occurred due to stress and possible pharmaceutical exposures.
Pregnant women are more vulnerable to gum disease, so during pregnancy we advise that a regular dental check up should be scheduled in the mid trimester and then a few weeks prior to the birth.
Many regulatory bodies recommend removing fish from the diet because of exposure to methylmercury…the predominant form of mercury in fish
In the lead up to conception, about three months of heavy metal detoxing and eliminating exposure to plastics for both parents is recommended to reduce the body’s toxin burden. Many regulatory bodies recommend removing fish from the diet because of exposure to methylmercury, dioxins and PCBs.1 Methylmercury (MeHg) is the predominant form of mercury in fish and is the most toxic form of mercury from the diet for
human health. It occurs primarily as a result of microbial activity on the mercury present in the sea. Human microflora in the mouth and gastrointestinal tract also bioconvert the mercury from amalgams into methylmercury.
Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has last reviewed its risk assessment for mercury in food. The results from this assessment indicate that certain groups, particularly pregnant women, women intending to become pregnant and young children (up to and including 6 years), should limit their consumption of some types of fish in order to control their exposure to mercury. A table of fish to avoid due to high mercury levels is available here. It is best to only eat small sized seafood, either fresh or in glass jars. Avoiding tinned foods are recommended due to metal dissolution of the brine and PCB linings.
Another serious consideration is to have a home based sleep study to identify if the prospective mother has a pre existing sleep breathing disorder such as obstructive sleep apnoea, snoring or upper airways resistance syndrome. If so, this would need to be managed prior to conception as the sleep breathing disorder can worsen and cause pre eclampsia and potentially premature birth. Sleep breathing disorders may also be a factor related to post natal depression.2
The physical and hormonal changes during pregnancy can increase the risk of developing sleep disordered breathing conditions or worsen existing ones.
The physical and hormonal changes during pregnancy can increase the risk of developing sleep disordered breathing conditions or worsen existing ones. Snoring is often markedly increased during pregnancy and is a sign of apnoeic episodes, that reduce blood oxygen saturation potentially being harmful to the developing foetus.3 A preventative and well informed approach is recommended, so in the early stages of planning for pregnancy – please ask us about the tests involved to diagnose sleep disordered breathing and the treatment options available to you. Laser + Holistic Dental recommends that both parents follow a wholefood based diet as recommended by the Weston Price Organisation to improve health before creating the most special of human blessings – your child.