It’s important to pay attention to your toddler’s smile, especially if you notice any changes that occur. In particular, if you notice that your toddler’s gums appear “white”, you should know that there are a couple reasons behind what could be causing this.

Oral Thrush

For one, if you notice that your child has milky white patches in the mouth that can be wiped away easily, it could very well be a case of oral thrush. Oral thrush, although usually more common for babies, is considered to be a yeast infection that occurs in the mouth. Specifically, it affects the soft tissues in the mouth and can result from a weakened immune system or antibiotics, which leads to an overgrowth of a natural yeast that is in the body. For babies, oral thrush and a diaper rash can occur at the same time. Treatment for oral thrush differs depending on the case; however, contact your child’s physician, as an antifungal may be needed.

Anemia

Anemia occurs in the body when there aren’t enough healthy red blood cells, which are needed to help carry oxygen throughout the body. Anemia can result from many different underlying causes including iron or Vitamin B12 deficiencies, Crohn’s disease, and celiac disease.

Common symptoms of anemia include:

Fatigue
Weakness
Irregular heartbeat
Shortness of breath
Cold hands and feet
Pale skin
Pale gums or “white” gums

If you notice that your child’s gums appear pale or “white” coupled with any of these common symptoms, it would be in your best interest to have your child see his or her physician.

Questions?

If you notice that your child’s gums look “white” or suspicious in anyway, those of us at Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry encourage you to contact us for an appointment for your child to be seen just to be certain that any dental related issue isn’t occurring. Our pediatric dentist specializes in working with children and will be certain that your child feels comfortable during an exam. Our office is located in Ashburn, VA for your convenience.