Having teenagers is a tough job, with their mood swings and all hormonal changes you suddenly find yourself with a semi grown up child who needs new cares and extra attention. With hormonal changes and puberty everything starts to change in your teen and so does his or her needs for dental care.
When thinking about teen’s dental problems, what is the first thing that comes to your mind as a parent? How much do you know about teen’s teeth and gum disease? YES, Gum disease. Believe it or not, teens are more at risk of gum disease compared to children as when they enter puberty their hormonal changes result in more blood circulation in the gums, making them more sensitive and more prone to gum disease? This is why I always advise parents to learn more about gum disease or periodontal problems in teens, know the signs and symptoms and beware of how serious this can be.
Who is at risk?
There are so many things that could lead to gum disease in teens and here below is a list of few common one’s for you to share with your teenage boy or girl.
Almost every teen is at risk, one way or another!!
- Gum disease can be inherited from parents
- Food teens eat, and their snacking habit can lead to gum disease
- Having braces and not taking good care of them can increase gum disease risk
- Medical conditions like diabetics or down syndrome
- Smoking is the most serious cause of gum disease in teens
It develops in stages:
Gum disease develops in stages and more than half of teens have at least one form of gum disease. Which means that Gum problems can be dealt with and cured before it becomes too serious. Here below you can read about different stages to know them better and to know when you should see your dentist to handle the problem.
3 Stages of Gum disease development:
- If gum bleeding happens every time your teen is brushing his or her teeth, chances are your teen already has the mildest form of gum disease. This usually is a sign of gingivitis. Other signs are gum redness, puffiness or tenderness.
- If plaque on a tooth is not removed by routine dental care, it will harden over time and form a crust called tartar, which destroys gum tissue and causes gum bleeding and periodontitis. A more advance form of gum disease.
- Periodontitis weakens gums and create pockets around the base of teeth which becomes a pool of bacteria. If untreated, teeth will become loose or may even fall out. Good news is that periodontitis is not very common in teens.
What are some signs of gum disease?
To know how to treat a dental problem its essential to know the signs and look for them before they become a real issue, right? If you see any of these 6 signs in your teenage child, drop what you’re doing and go and see your paediatric dentist in Dubai for a check-up as soon as possible.
- Regular gum bleeding during brushing of flossing
- Changing of gums colour. They become red, swollen or tender.
- Gums pulling away from teeth
- Sore mouth
- Bad breath that doesn’t go away
Lets do our best to prevent it:
Gum disease can be tricky and sneaky cause the signs or pain and irritation doesn’t really show until the damage is done. Soooooo, it is super important to keep your dentists visits a priority and check teen teeth and gums regularly. With X ray and thorough check-up your dentist in Dubai can detect any gum problems at an early stage.
The sooner gum disease is tracked and detected the better and we always advise a preventative approach. Teenagers must brush their teeth twice every day, floss and use mouth wash.
Your teen has gum disease, now what?
If it happens that the signs are missed and you find your teen having serious periodontitis, you must visit your dentist or periodontist who specializes in gum treatment. They will most probably apply one or more of below treatments to tackle the disease.
- Scaling or root planning: Scraping plague or tartar from teeth, below or above gum line.
- Antibiotics: Usually used with scraping antibiotics will stop spreading of infection.
- Surgery: Used for advance cases when the dentist will have to open and clean the gum pocket through surgery.
- Gingival grafting: If gum tissue is damaged to a level that it cannot be stitched back; the dentist will remove healthy gm tissue from another part of the mouth and stiches it into place.
Though gum disease is quite common in teens, most parents don’t have much information about it and they usually learn it the hard way when the disease is fully developed. Remember that prevention is always easier and cheaper. Teach your teens about gum disease and ask them to inform you as soon as they feel any irritation in their gum or see any of the signs mentioned in this article. Make sure they keep a healthy dental habit, eat healthy and brush and floss regularly. Last but not least, keep your dentist visits in order and ask your best pediatric dentist in Dubai for guidance and advise.
Do get in touch with your questions and share with us your experience.
“To a lifetime of healthy happy smiles!”
So don’t delay your child his first Pediatric dentist visit, at our pediatric dentistry clinic in Dubai health care city you can schedule an appointment, we will be happy to give you your child the best dental care.
“To a lifetime of healthy happy smiles!”