Gingival Cysts in Infants

A newborn infant, even in the easiest of births, makes a rough entry from the womb into the outside world. The journey and transition from his mother's body can leave a series of marks on an infant's body. Gingival cysts of the newborn, also called dental lamina cysts, is a common, yet benign condition in infants. Gingival cysts affect the gums and mouth of your baby.

Gingival cysts are common in infants. (Image: Jose Luis Pelaez Inc/Blend Images/Getty Images)

Symptoms

Gingival cysts, also called Epstein pearls, are small white-yellow raised bumps that appear on your baby's gums or the roof of his mouth. The protrusions may look like budding baby teeth to new parents. Gingival cysts of the newborn rarely come singly, but appear in small clusters.

Treatment

No treatment is required of dental lamina in infants. The cysts rupture and shrink within a few weeks. In some cases, gingival cysts may disappear and recur throughout the first six months of life. Consult your pediatrician if the growths impede feeding or seem to cause pain in your child.

Incidence

As many as 90 percent of newborn babies develop gingival cysts, according to the UCLA School of Dentistry. The condition is equally prevalent in boys and girls. The cysts appear more often on the roof of the mouth than on the gums, according to an article in the 2008 issue of the "Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry."

Considerations

Discuss concerns regarding your infant's oral health with your pediatrician. A physical examination is all that is needed to diagnose gingival cysts; no further tests are required. Begin good oral care early in life by wiping your baby's gums with a soft, damp cloth after feedings.

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