Puberty gingivitis is not a very well-known condition despite it being fairly common. Like all forms of gingivitis, it can lead to more serious periodontal disease if it is not diagnosed and treated promptly.
What causes puberty gingivitis?
Puberty gingivitis is most common in preadolescent boys and girls who are between the ages of 11 and 13. Kids often become more independent with their dental care at this age, leading to changes in their oral hygiene consistency.
This combination of poor oral hygiene habits and diet and elevated hormone levels during puberty can lead to excess plaque buildup and infection. Poor nutrition can make it challenging for the body to fight off infections, which puts children at a higher risk of developing gum disease.
Teens who smoke, vape, or chew tobacco tend to be more likely to contract gum disease than non-smoking peers.
Being under continuous stress weakens the immune system and increases inflammation. High-stress levels, combined with poor oral health and hygiene, can cause gum disease to develop over time.
Puberty gingivitis symptoms include:
- Inflammation of the gums
- Red and swollen gum tissue
- Gums being softer to the touch
- Bad breath
The best "treatment" for puberty gingivitis is prevention!
As your children get older and more independent, they may be less inclined to listen to their parents about maintaining good oral health. Parents must remain firm on this point to prevent gum disease from developing.
Ensure that your pre-teen brushes thoroughly for two full minutes in the morning and again before bed, and flosses carefully at least once a day.
If your child has already developed gingivitis, periodontal therapy at your dentist’s office may help to get it under control. Mouthwashes containing chlorhexidine can be used to control the infection as well. Our Winnipeg dentists will also advise your teen on the correct brushing and flossing techniques for long-term dental health.