2 Medical Conditions That Can Impact Your Child's Dental Health

2 October 2015
 Categories: Dentist, Blog

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If your child's pediatrician treats your little one for a chronic health problem, it is crucial to be sure that the pediatric dentist knows about those conditions as well. It is often shocking to learn that common childhood maladies can cause significant dental problems. Unless your children's dentist can make the necessary modifications to their oral health care, decay and gum disease are likely.

Understanding The Link Between Asthma And Dental Problems

More than 6 million children in the United States suffer from asthma and the very medications that restore their ability to breathe can cause additional challenges. The problem occurs in two different ways. First, asthma sufferers breathe primarily through their mouths, which means that their mouths dry out frequently. 

In addition, the inhalers and steroids by themselves contribute to dry mouth as well. The lack of saliva and a dry mouth allows decay to form more quickly and enamel wears away faster than it would in a healthier child that did not need medication. In a brief period of time, cavities and other dental problems are present. 

Common solutions include the use of a spacer on every inhaler, which guarantees that the inhaled solution gets to your child's lungs, in lieu of lingering on their teeth. Another option is to have your child rinse their mouth out with water after using the inhaler. Your pediatric dentist will be able to make specific recommendations for your child's dental and health situation.   

Hay Fever And Dental Pain . . . Even Though It's In Your Head, It's Not All In Your Head

It is important to note that mouth breathing is not only for asthma sufferers. If you find that your son or daughter needs allergy medicine due to hay fever, they may also breathe primarily through the mouth. Once you are aware of the problem, it is a good idea to schedule an appointment with your children's dentist to check for new decay or erosion. 

Over time, continuously experiencing hay fever can also make your child more susceptible to both sleep apnea and dry mouth. Regardless of the reason for the dry mouth, it is a known trigger for oral health issues. 

In addition, sore teeth have also been reported, even when no decay or trauma is present. The pain occurs due to sinus pain, infection and swelling as the direct result of hay fever and other similar seasonal allergies.  Regardless, if your child mentions a toothache, get them to the dentist immediately. Only an expert can tell you if it is a cavity, hay fever or something else entirely. 

In conclusion, kids are prone to a variety of common childhood illnesses. However, it is important to let your child's dentist know about any health challenges they are currently facing, as the medication they use or even the problem itself can impact their dental health.