Many think that periodontal disease is an exclusively adult problem, even though many studies now indicate that gingivitis, the first stage of periodontal disease, is also present in children and adolescents. The advanced forms of periodontal disease are rarer in children than in adults, but may nevertheless be present.
Signs and Symptoms of Periodontal Disease in Children
If your child is consuming sugary and starchy foods in excess, wearing orthodontic braces that are difficult to clean regularly, or taking certain medications that can affect the gums, you need to look for warning signs of periodontal disease. Some symptoms of periodontal disease are:
Different Types of Periodontal Diseases in Children
Chronic gingivitis is common in this age group. Causes swelling of the gums, redness, ease of bleeding. If left untreated, it may progress to more severe forms of periodontal disease.
The aggressive periodontitis can affect children who are healthy in all other respects. It is a very aggressive and localized form present in teenagers and young adults and mainly affects incises and the first molars. It is characterized by a severe loss of alveolar bone, even in patients with very little plaque or tartar.
The generalized periodontitis may begin around puberty and involve the whole mouth. It is characterized by inflammation of the gums and heavy accumulation of plaque and tartar. It makes the teeth less firm.
The periodontitis associated with a systemic disease is present in children and adolescents as well as adults. The conditions that make children more likely to develop are type 1 diabetes (insulin-dependent), Down syndrome, and Papillon-Lefevre syndrome.
Periodontal Disease Treatment
Preventive visits to a pediatric dentist are important to treat the disease in time. Some common methods include:
Tips for Parents to Prevent Periodontal Disease in Children
Gingivitis is preventable with a regular routine of toothbrush and toothpaste, and dental floss.
All these habits and a little precaution can help maintain kids’ oral health and prevent any kind of dental problems in children.
A dental marketer at Michael G. Long DDS, Fresno, CA and a believer in holistic health, Grace lives by the rule that health and happiness go hand in hand. She writes on various dental topics focusing on healthy living and holistic health. When she’s not working or blogging, she enjoys spending her time with her family and volunteering at the local youth centers where she educates children about the importance of health and fitness.