PERIODONTICS : Gingivitis in Children and Adolescents

Gingivitis or inflammation of the gingiva, is the commonest oral disease in children and adolescents. 

It is characterized by the presence of gingival inflammation without detectable bone loss or clinical attachment loss.

The causes and risks are as varied in children as in adults and range from local to systemic causes.

periodontics-children

The most important local predisposing factor in children is poor oral hygiene which stems from children’s dependence on adults for assistance with routine oral hygiene.

It also stems from age limitation in perception of the need for regular and efficient tooth brushing. When plaque and food debris accumulate in poor oral hygiene, micro-organisms also accumulate and the process of inflammation starts. 
This leads to gingivitis, which, if not taken care of can progress to gradual destruction of supporting soft and hard tissues of the teeth. This is evident in the very young and those with disabilities, where manual dexterity is not well developed.




Folakemi Oredugba and Patricia Ayanbadejo
Faculty of Dental Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos Nigeria



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