Dental Procedure Pain: Get the Facts

What Should You Do If Your Child's Gums Are Red And Inflamed?

As a parent, you are often reminded to keep your child's dental health in mind. But their gums are not mentioned as often. As such, when your child smiles and you notice that their gums are red and inflamed, you may not know quite what to do. Chances are, your child has gum disease, also known as gingivitis. There are a few things you can do at home to treat it, and if you don't see results within two or three weeks, a pediatric dentist can step in with more intensive care. Here's a closer look at your treatment options.

Help your child brush their teeth

When kids start developing gingivitis, it is often because they are not brushing their teeth often enough or well enough. Start supervising your child to ensure they are brushing twice a day for two minutes. If your child is younger, you may also need to revert back to brushing their teeth for them or at least watching to make sure they spend equal time on each quarter of their mouth. Also, help your child floss their teeth; you may need to buy them thin floss or floss picks to make this easier.

Start having your child use mouthwash

Purchase a bottle of antiseptic mouthwash. There are ones that are flavored like bubblegum and other kid-friendly tastes. Explain to your child how to swish the mouthwash around in their mouth and then spit it out; you can demonstrate this for them. Then, make sure they use the mouthwash twice a day after brushing. It will help kill the bacteria that are causing their gingivitis.

Take your child to the dentist for a cleaning procedure

If your child's gums are still red a week or two after improving their brushing and rinsing routine, then make an appointment with the pediatric dentist. They can give your child's teeth a thorough cleaning, removing tartar along the gum line that may be contributing to the gingivitis. After a cleaning, your efforts to improve your child's brushing and mouthwash habits should be more effective.

Talk to the pediatric dentist about specialized rinses

After your child's dental cleaning, make sure you ask the pediatric dentist about any specialized mouthwashes that may be a better choice for your child. They may prescribe or recommend something that contains chlorhexidine, which is a really powerful antiseptic. Your child may need to use this once a week or so to help protect them against gum disease as they continue to improve their brushing and flossing routine.

If your child's gums are red and inflamed, it is almost always because they have gum disease. It's important to act quickly to keep things from getting any worse. Visit a pediatric dental clinic, such as New England Dental Specialists of Norwood, for additional help.