Periodontitis in Children and Adolescents
Periodontal disease is not a dental ailment limited to adults; juvenile periodontitis is quite common. Studies suggest that gingivitis, the mildest form of periodontal disease, is virtually universally found in children and adolescents.
Chronic gingivitis is a common type of gum disease among children and causes gums tissue to swell, become red and bleed. Gingivitis periodontitis can be prevented and treating via regular brushing, flossing and visits to the dentist. Chiefly affecting the first molars and incisors, localized aggressive periodontitis occurs in teenagers and young adults who experience loss of alveolar bone as a result. Beginning around puberty, generalized aggressive periodontitis affects the whole mouth and is characterized by inflamed gums, plaque and calculus build-up, and eventual loosening of teeth.
During puberty, it is especially important for adolescents to maintain proper oral hygiene (regular brushing, flossing and dental check-ups) as an increased level of sex hormones leads to increased gum sensitivity and irritability. If gums are particularly swollen, red or tender, your dental professional may suggest periodontal treatment to prevent teeth bone loss or gum tissue damage.
Children who suffer from Type 1 diabetes, Down Syndrome or Papillon-Lefevre syndrome are more susceptible to periodontal disease.