You flash your teeth when you smile and use them to enjoy your favorite foods, so it is little wonder why a loose permanent tooth is such a concern. While many children have gained their adult teeth by the early teen years, other teenagers may experience loose baby teeth for years to come. Losing baby teeth is typically not a cause for concern. If you suspect that your teen has loose adult teeth, visit a dentist immediately.
Periodontitis In Teenagers
Besides loose teeth, teenagers suffering from periodontitis, or gum disease, may also experience swollen or brightly colored gums, bad breath and widening gaps between teeth, say experts with the Mayo Clinic website. A lack of proper dental care, like not brushing or flossing the teeth regularly, may contribute to the development of gum disease. Teenagers can reduce or reverse the effects of gum disease by brushing after every meal and getting regular dental cleanings.
While teeth can be strong and durable, they are not immune to damage. Children may be at risk of tooth injury that leads to loose or knocked-out teeth if they play contact sports, advise child development experts with the Kids Health website. Teenagers should check their teeth after any injury to the mouth and seek help immediately if any teeth are damaged. If a tooth is knocked out, soak it in milk and visit a dentist immediately, advises the American Academy of Pediatrics. After half an hour outside of the socket, the odds of successfully putting the tooth back into place drop.
Avoiding Loose Teeth
Many factors can lead to loose teeth. A nutritionally empty diet or lack of food, persistent fatigue, tobacco use and drinking or eating sugary and starchy foods like soda pop or candy are more likely to lead to gum disease, or periodontitis, say the Kids Health professionals. Other drug use can also contribute to loose and damaged teeth, says Dr. Dan Peterson, a dentist in Nebraska. Regular use of drugs like methamphetamine may cause teeth to loosen, fall out or decay to the root of the tooth.
Getting Additional Help
No matter the cause behind your teenager's loose adult teeth, you should contact a dentist or doctor immediately for help. These professionals can rule out serious illness and look for clues to explain your child's dental problems. Dietary or other lifestyle changes, like no longer using drugs, may be necessary to prevent further damage. In some cases, dental surgery may be necessary to save teeth
- KidsHealth: Gum Disease
- American Academy Of Pediatrics: Tooth Injury
- Mayo Clinic: Periodontitis Risk Factors
- Mayo Clinic: Periodontitis Symptoms
- Kids Health: Taking Care Of Your Teeth
- Kids Health: Dealing With A Knocked-Out Tooth
- American Academy of Pediatrics: When Children Begin To Lose Their Baby Teeth
- Family Gentle Dental Care: Drug Use & Oral Cues
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