The Link Between Periodontal Disease and Child Obesity



As parents, having your child’s best interest at heart is always at the forefront of your mind. Making sure

they are well cared for, well fed and always healthy. One part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle is ensuring

there is ample amount of exercise and activity to stimulate the children physically and mentally. With the

rise of technology it has been more challenging for parents to engage their children in physical activity. In

turn, this leads to more children being overweight. Not only is this weight problem affecting children’s

health but recently, there have been findings that link periodontal disease (gingivitis) to obesity in






Child ObesityIt has already been established that there is a link between

adult obesity and periodontal disease. Since researchers have

confirmed this information they thought it would be worthwhile to

a look at the association between childhood obesity and periodontal

disease. Researchers at the University of Buenos Aires School found

that there was a strong relationship between overweight children

and inflammation in their gums, the beginning stages of periodontal

disease. Additionally, they found that there is a strong relationship between gingivitis and children who are

insulin resistant. Insulin resistance is a concern in young children because this means their bodies are not

properly recognizing and utilizing the insulin hormone which is activated when there is glucose (sugar)

released in the bloodstream. These bodily reactions usually go undetected and can lead to the first signs of

type II diabetes.




Some of the first signs of periodontal disease (gingivitis) are puffy, red gums. One element that obesity and

periodontal disease have in common is inflammation. We know that it is somewhat uncommon for

children to have inflammation circulating in their bodies. If a child is overweight this puts them at risk for

having inflammation in their bodies. Consequently, it would be wise for a doctor/general dentist to check

the child for gingivitis (periodontal disease) if the child is seemly overweight. Consistent inflammation is

one reason why researchers presume that the two are associated.





The best way to help your child maintain a healthy lifestyle is to encourage them to go outside with friends

and siblings to play. Alternatively, encouraging your children to snack on fruits and veggies will aid the

children in maintaining a healthy weight, which in turn, will help their oral health.


If you have any questions regarding your child’s dental health it is best to contact your general dentist for

an exam. If you have more specific questions related to your child’s dental health we are here to help! The

employees of Joseph R. Nemeth & Associates are dedicated to ensuring our patients receive the utmost

care and are equipped with all the information they need to successfully maintain a healthy mouth for

them and their families. Feel free to reach out to us by visiting our website or by calling the office at






The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or

treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding

medical conditions or any questions at all regarding Periodontal disease and obesity.