Clinical practice guidelines for oral health care during pregnancy: a systematic evaluation and summary recommendations for general dental practitioners

Quintessence Int. 2022 Mar 14;53(4):362-373. doi: 10.3290/j.qi.b2644863.


Objective: To evaluate and summarize clinical practice guidelines on the prevention, diagnosi´╗┐s, and treatment of dental diseases during pregnancy, and to provide summary recommendations for general dental practitioners involved in the dental care of pregnant women.

Method and materials: Using keywords related to prenatal dental care in combination with guidelines or consensus statements, online databases, websites of professional organizations, and evidence-based practice platforms were searched. Published guidelines or consensus statements that met the inclusion criteria were selected and evaluated with the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research & Evaluation Instrument II (AGREE-II) tool. Key recommendations were summarized and assessed for consistency across the guidelines.

Results: A total of 15 guidelines or consensus statement documents for oral health care during pregnancy were found after the initial search, of which 7 documents met the inclusion criteria; these were analyzed with AGREE-II. These guidelines were developed by expert panels and consensus meetings after comprehensive review of the best available evidence, and consistently deliver clear messages that preventive, diagnostic, restorative, and periodontal procedures and tooth extractions are safe throughout pregnancy and effective in improving and maintaining the oral health of mothers and their children. Dental diseases should be treated in a timely manner and dental emergency treatments can be provided at any time during pregnancy. Dental examination and prophylaxis should be conducted every 6 months to maintain the oral health of pregnant women.

Conclusion: Published clinical guidelines are consistent in delivering clear messages and providing guidance to dental practitioners for timely and effective dental care during pregnancy. Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of oral diseases are safe throughout the pregnancy.

Keywords: clinical guidelines; consensus statements; dental care; oral health; pregnancy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Dentists*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Oral Health*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Pregnancy
  • Professional Role