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Dental Health For Your Children

Jan 21, 2008
Contrary to popular notion, gingivitis, which is the first stage of periodontal disease affects children and adolescents as much as it does adults. However, children are less prone to have the advanced form of periodontal disease.

Different Types of periodontal diseases in children

Chronic gingivitis: Commonly seen in children, chronic gingivitis causes the gum tissue to turn red and inflamed and to bleed easily. While it can be prevented and treated by regularly brushing, flossing and regular professional dental care, if left untreated it can advance rapidly and result in a form of periodontal disease that is more severe.

Aggressive periodontitis: Affecting otherwise healthy teenagers and young adults localized aggressive periodontitis affects the first molars and incisors. It is typified by severe loss of alveolar bone. There is surprisingly little plaque formation on the teeth.

Generalized aggressive periodontitis: Starting around puberty, generalized aggressive periodontitis involves the entire mouth and is marked by heavy calculus and plaque accumulation and inflammation of the gums. In due course it results in the teeth becoming loose.

Periodontitis associated with systemic disease: Children who have Down Syndrome, Pailoon-Lefevre syndrome or Type I diabetes are more susceptible to periodontal diseases.

Symptoms of Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease in children is usually accompanied by one of all of the following symptons:

* Bleeding gums during flossing, brushing or even at other times
* Bright red gums that are also swollen
* Roots of teeth are exposed because of gums that are extremely receded
* Persistent bad breath that does not improve even after brushing and flossing

How to Prevent Periodontitis in Children

Establishing good oral health habits and early diagnosis are essential for successful prevention and treatment of periodontal diseases. Promote good oral habits in your child as early as possible. You can start using toothpaste when your child is as young as 12 months. Schedule regular appointments with your dentist for checkups, teeth cleaning and periodontal evaluations. Check your child's mouth regularly and look for the presence of any symptoms of periodontal disease including bright red and swollen gums, bleeding gums, bad breath and gums that are receding from the teeth.

Work with your child towards improving his poor oral health habits. Being a role model and practicing what you preach will encourage to look after his dental hygiene more than any other strategy you may use.

A word of precaution; an advanced form of periodontal disease may be an early sign of a prevailing systemic disease and would require immediate medical attention. If your child exhibits any of the symptoms of severe and persistent periodontitis that is resistant to therapy, a medical evaluation and medical treatment is a must.

Cavities & your child

Children who eat a lot of sugary foods including cookies, candy or raisins or drink a lot of sweet drinks including sodas or sweetened drinks are at a higher risk of getting cavities. It is important to get children into the habit of gargling after every meal, brushing their teeth at least twice a day and flossing at least once daily.
About the Author
Learn about the treatment of gingivitis and gum disease at http://www.gumdisease-treatment.com/treatment-of-gingivitis.html
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