Anti-Seizure Drugs And Pediatric Gum Problems

If your child suffers from epilepsy or other seizure disorders, then he or she may be taking anti-seizure medications. Although these prescription drugs are effective in reducing the number and severity of your child's seizures, they may cause significant problems with gum tissue. Here are some ways anti-seizure medications can affect your child's oral health and general well-being and what you can do about them.

Hyperplasia Of Gum Tissue

Certain anti-seizure medications can cause hyperplasia of your child's gum tissue. When this happens, the gums will become inflamed and grow over and in between the teeth. Because of this, your son or daughter may be unable to effectively maintain a good routine of oral hygiene, which can raise the risk for gum infections and cavities.

Gum hyperplasia may also cause the gums to become irritated and they may also bleed at the slightest touch. Your child may be fearful of brushing and flossing because of the bleeding risk and may therefore forego his or her oral care routine.

To help maintain proper oral hygiene, consider purchasing a water flow dental appliance for your child to use to augment his or her brushing and flossing routine. If you notice signs of an oral infection or if the child's gums bleeding easily, make an appointment with a children's dental care specialist.

He or she will examine the young person's oral cavity to determine if a bacterial infection is present. If so, antibiotics may be prescribed, however, if the dental exam reveals severe gingival damage, your child may be referred to a periodontist, a dentist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of gum disease.

Self-Esteem Problems

Because gum hyperplasia can negatively alter the appearance of the gums and teeth, your child may be afraid to smile or even talk in front of his or her peers for fear of being made fun of. This can lead to social isolation, anxiety disorders, depression, and poor grades. It is for these reasons that treatment needs to be started as soon as possible.

In addition to making an appointment at the pediatric dental clinic, your child will also need to visit the physician, who may decide to decrease the dosage of the anti-seizure medication. Lower dosages may help the gum tissue heal so that the dentist can better treat the gingival hyperplasia.

If your child experiences seizures and is taking medication to control them, work with both the pediatric dentist and the physician. When you work with both of these professional disciplines, your child is more likely to enjoy a more favorable outcome regarding his or her oral and psychological health.

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