Diabetes – How It Can Affect Your Child’s Oral Care
In the United States, diabetes is a plague that afflicts just shy of 1 in every 10 adults. However, children must also deal with this health condition. Nearly a quarter of a percent of youths under the age of 20 have some form of diabetes with type 1 patients outnumbering type 2 patients three to one. If your child is dealing with diabetes, what do you need to know about the unique challenges this condition poses when it comes to dental care?
How Diabetes Affects Dental Health
There are a number of factors related to diabetes that can put a child at higher risk for gum disease. This, in turn, can make it tougher to manage blood sugar levels. Here are a few of the warning signs to watch out for:
- Inflamed, bleeding gums – If gums swell, redden, or bleed during brushing and flossing, this is a sign of gingivitis, a precursor to gum disease.
- Dry mouth – Diabetes can lead to less saliva production. Since saliva helps to wash away plaque, a dry mouth can lead to a higher rate of tooth decay and cavities.
- Oral infection – If a wound occurs or gingivitis progresses, there is an increased risk of infection, at which point intervention by a dental professional is necessary.
- Early tooth eruption – Teeth may grow in sooner than they are supposed to. This can particularly cause complications with adult teeth if baby teeth haven’t fallen out yet.
- Receding gums – A receding gumline can expose the teeth to more decay and eventually lead to loose or even lost teeth.
- Slow healing – Diabetes is known for causing wounds to heal slower, and this is the case within the mouth as well.
Dental Help for Kids Coping with Diabetes in Southern California
If your child is dealing with diabetes, an experienced pediatric dentist is a must in order to maintain good oral care. The board-certified pediatric dentists at BRSH+FLSS are up for the challenge, so give us a call today at 619-741-1500 to schedule an appointment.