and Angela J. Yoon1
Columbia University College of Dental Medicine and Department of Pathology and Cell Biology, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, USA
The cause of nutritional deficiencies is either from decreased intake (i.e., a diet that lacks essential nutrients) or the inability to absorb the nutrients (i.e., gastrointestinal conditions such as celiac disease). Children are more at risk for serious complications due to nutritional deficiencies than adults. Nutritional deficiencies affect children of all socioeconomic backgrounds but are more frequently seen in children from economically disadvantaged families and in children with underlying systemic diseases.
In many cases, vitamin/nutrient deficiencies show intraoral manifestation. Although deficiencies can affect the teeth, periodontal tissues, as well as salivary glands, for the purpose of this atlas, we will limit the focus to the mucosal manifestations.
Iron deficiency can result in anemia. As in the various forms of anemias, the oral manifestations of iron-deficiency anemia include mucosal pallor, most notable on the gingiva and lips, angular cheilitis, and atrophic glossitis (loss of papillae of the dorsal tongue, causing a smooth, red appearance). Patients may complain of glossodynia or dysphagia. Iron deficiency is also a predisposing factor for oral candidiasis. Patients also may suffer from recurrent bouts of aphthous stomatitis.