Gingivitis is a common oral condition that happens when plaque and bacteria build up on your teeth, and infect your gums.  Gingivitis is usually an early stage of gum disease, if left untreated it can cause harm to your gums, causing them to decay.  With treatment it can clear up. 

Puberty gingivitis is also very common.  Puberty gingivitis is caused usually by the increase in hormones in preadolescent boys and girls around the ages of 11-13.  If puberty gingivitis is left untreated it can progress into other diseases and conditions as an adult.  


Causes Of Puberty Gingivitis

There are a number of things that play into you having puberty gingivitis. 

One is poor oral hygiene.  This is normal for children of this age. 

Hormonal changes is another cause of puberty gingivitis.  The increase in hormones can increase the blood flow to the gums and change how the gums react to plaque buildup. 

Plaque buildup is another cause.  This happens when there is poor oral hygiene.  If your child also has braces it can be hard to floss or brush around the braces effectively enough to get all the plaque off. 

Tobacco use, and stress can also cause puberty gingivitis. 

Poor nutrition can also play a role. 

If your child only drinks sugary beverages, or eats a lot of sugary foods, foods that are high in carbohydrates and saturated fats this can all cause excess plaque buildup, which if there is poor oral hygiene can lead to puberty gingivitis.  


Symptoms Of Puberty Gingivitis

Symptoms of puberty gingivitis are similar to symptoms of normal gingivitis.  Gums will bleed easier.  Gums may be inflamed.  They may look red, swollen, and be less firm.  Your gums may be more sensitive causing pain when you brush them.  They may feel tender when you are chewing or brushing.  



The best treatment for puberty gingivitis is prevention.  Making sure a good oral hygiene routine is in place before things start to show symptoms of puberty gingivitis. 

If symptoms are showing, scheduling a visit with your doctor is important.  Your doctor will usually be able to diagnose your child with puberty gingivitis from a regular exam.  If your doctor discovers that your child has puberty gingivitis they will most likely start periodontal therapy right away.  Periodontal therapy is an umbrella term describing treatments for gum diseases.  One treatment option is scaling and root planing, these terms basically mean a deep cleaning for your teeth. 

Your doctor may also want you to use a mouthwash with chlorhexidine in it.  Chlorhexidine is an antiseptic and disinfectant and can help reduce the amount of bacteria in the mouth. 

Things you can do at home is to come up with a good oral hygiene routine with your child.  This means they need to be brushing two times every day for at least 2 minutes.  Fluoride toothpaste helps break down plaque buildup.  Floss at least one a day. 

Make sure you are keeping your child up to date with their dental visits.  They should be going in twice a year for regular cleanings. 

Using an antimicrobial mouthwash can also help. 

If you notice there starts to be some redness and inflammation on the gums, brush them gently.  Making sure you brush them can help decrease inflammation.  The first few times your gums may bleed and be sensitive but after a week or so that tenderness and bleeding should subside.  

Another lifestyle change you can make is eating a balanced diet.  Make sure you are getting all the good foods in your diet, and not have a diet heavy in carbohydrates, sugary foods, and high in starches.  If you eat a lot of sugary foods, brush your teeth soon after to help stop plaque buildup.  




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