During a teen’s formative years, maintaining strong dental health and good habits is critical. Many young people experience a turning point when they reach their teen years. At this point, teens either set themselves up for a lifelong commitment to good oral hygiene or things start going downhill. Even when teens work hard to keep their teeth clean, common dental problems can still occur if they do not floss or visit Splendid Dental Woodlands for bi-annual cleanings.
Wisdom Teeth Issues
Common dental problems in teens often include their wisdom teeth because they typically appear toward the end of their adolescent years. By the time a teen reaches age 13, more often than not, they have all of their permanent teeth. Those who are ages 17 and 21 typically see their wisdom teeth.
For some, the appearance of wisdom teeth might be painful. If these teeth do not grow in the correct position or are misaligned, that further complicates things. Parents can help their teens prevent problems from escalating. They can do this by asking their dentist to monitor wisdom tooth growth and address any issues causing pain or discomfort.
While this is another of the most common dental problems in teens, cavities are mostly preventable. When teens eat foods that are starchy or sugary, that leads to plaque formation on their teeth. When plaque is present on a tooth, that means bacteria is eating away at the tooth enamel’s surface.
As that occurs, cavities or holes develop in the tooth. When teens are vigilant regarding their oral hygiene, that removes plaque before problems arise, you can help your teen prevent this problem by encouraging brushing, flossing, and having regular cleanings.
Gingivitis or Other Forms of Gum Disease
Another dental problem teens face gingivitis or other forms of gum disease, including periodontitis. When teens experience mild forms of gum disease, that is when gingivitis is present. Some of the most common symptoms include:
- Their gums bleeding
- Slight swelling
- Bad breath
Because this is mild, gingivitis is often reversible. If teens do not have their dentist treat their gingivitis, that could lead to the development of periodontitis. That is when pockets of infection begin forming along the teen’s gum line. At this stage, that is when tooth loss could occur. Typically, gum disease that leads to tooth decay is preventable. Encourage your teen to go to the dentist and use good oral hygiene as preventative measures.
Misaligned or Crowded Teeth
Another of the most common dental problems in teens include crooked, crowded, or misaligned teeth. Crooked and misaligned teeth typically occur when there is crowding in the teen’s mouth. That could result in gapped or spacing in teeth. Beyond that of the teen experiencing cosmetic issues, this can also lead to problems with their bite.
If there are problems with the teen’s bite, that could result in teeth wearing down prematurely. Another name for a bad bite is malocclusion. This misalignment could also lead to lockjaw, which is also referred to as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues. When visiting the dentist with your teen, ask them to refer you to an orthodontist to help with realignment.
Some teens might want to express themselves by using piercings. While many of these piercings do not cause problems, that is not always the case with oral piercings. When teens pierce parts of their mouth, that could lead to issues.
For example, if teens get oral piercings like tongue rings or studs, that could pose a significant health risk. It is not uncommon for tongue piercings to lead to infections. The same result could occur if other parts of the mouth have piercings, as well. One of the most common dental issues with oral piercings is swelling. Sometimes, this swelling is so bad that teens have difficulty opening or closing their mouths.
Final Thoughts on Common Dental Problems
Are you concerned that your teen is not taking good care of their mouth and might experience common dental problems? Do you worry that these problems could lead to lifelong issues? Now is the time to reach out and receive the help you need. Contact Splendid Dental Woodlands at 832.365.4190 to learn more about these problems, preventative techniques, and how we can help.