Unfortunately, it's actually quite common for children to develop gingivitis. The reason this is so unfortunate is that it's something that as a parent, you can easily help your child prevent developing.
All that's required is a regular oral health routine consisting of brushing and flossing. Of course, it's also important for your child to see a pediatric dentist on a routine basis (starting 6 months after their first tooth erupts and continuing every 6 months for the rest of their lives).
Causes of Gum Disease
This condition is mainly caused by plaque building up on your child's teeth. This plaque contains bacteria that then sticks to their teeth and if it isn't removed it'll turn into tartar.
Signs of Gum Disease
As a parent, you should be involved in helping your children take care of their teeth at least twice a day. This doesn't only give you the opportunity to teach them how to do things correctly, it also helps you watch for signs of gum disease. These signs will include gums that bleed when being brushed or flossed, puffiness, swelling, a bright red color, and recession (gums pulling away from the teeth and if left long enough, exposing the roots). Another noticeable sign is bad breath that never goes away.
Why Treatment is so Important Left untreated, your child's gingivitis can become quite serious. It can advance to other forms of gum disease including aggressive periodontitis (a condition typically not seen until the teen years that mainly affects your child's first molars and incisor with severe bone loss), and generalized aggressive periodontitis (a condition that rapidly progresses, resulting in your child's teeth not being attached and their alveolar bone structure, which is responsible for supporting their teeth, being destroyed).
This is why when you first notice any signs that your child has this issue, it's important to bring it to our attention right away.