• Can Children Get Gum Disease?

    on Jun 21st, 2017

You may associate periodontal disease with aging adults or those who smoke. However, gum disease is not restricted by age. Gum disease begins with the onset of excessive bacteria and plaque buildup along the teeth and gum line. This is typically found in patients who don’t follow diligent oral hygiene habits – whether they are young or old. The consequences of untreated gum disease also remain the same, regardless of age. Advanced gum disease can lead to tooth loss and threats to one’s overall health.

Before you become too worried about your child’s teeth falling out due to gum disease, you should know that advanced stages of gum disease (or periodontitis) is quite rare in kids. If it occurs in the young population, it is most likely due to a systemic disease, such as Diabetes, Leukemia or Down Syndrome, which can either compromise their immune system or pose a challenge to teeth cleaning. In either case, it is important to ensure your child is seeing a dentist or periodontist on a regular basis for consistent treatments and checkups.

More common, however, are kids with gingivitis. The good news is that gingivitis is the first and most treatable stage of gum disease. If your child has chronic gingivitis, you may notice that his or her gums are red, puffy or susceptible to bleeding during brushing. You may also find that your child has bad breath on a more regular basis. In most cases, a more diligent effort in the oral hygiene department can reverse early gingivitis. Remember that parents should be brushing and flossing for their child until they have the dexterity to do a good job (often until they can tie their shoe or write in cursive).

If you have a teenager in your house, there’s an extra risk for gingivitis or early gum disease. Teens not only have the responsibility of keeping up with their own hygiene, but they also have extra hormones to deal with. The rise in hormones do more than cause mood swings; they can also make your teen more susceptible to gum infection – called hormonal gingivitis. If you have a child that is going through puberty or one that is wearing braces, be sure to stay on top of their gum health and schedule a dental appointment if they display signs of gum disease.

At Dentistry of Highland Village, we are here to help protect your child from gum disease in every way possible. However, if you are concerned about the appearance or health of their gums, we offer the most proven treatments to reverse the condition before it threatens their health.

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3651 Weslayan St., Suite 208
Houston, TX 77027
Phone: 713-231-9273
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