Many people will only experience bleeding gums when they floss or brush their teeth. Pay special attention during your hygiene routine.
Healthy gum tissue is firm, smooth, and lies flat next to the teeth. Swollen tissue may have a rolled margin along the teeth or appear visibly inflamed.
Gum tissue should be evenly pigmented and light pink or coral. Dark pink, red, purple or even blue gums could indicate something is wrong.
Do I just need to brush and floss more?
A buildup of bacterial plaque, the catalyst for gum disease, is most often the cause of swollen and bleeding gums. Oral infections, allergic reactions, and mouth ulcers, or canker sores, can increase your risk of swelling. Certain types of vitamin deficiencies and hormonal changes, such as pregnancy, can also impact your gum health.
The bacteria that cause gum disease release toxic substances. This causes the soft tissue to become infected and increasingly inflamed.
Brushing too aggressively or using a hard-bristled brush can irritate the delicate tissue. Burns from hot food and drinks can also injure the gums.
Puberty, pregnancy, and menstruation, as well as oral birth control, cause a rise in certain hormones. This leads to increased blood flow to the gums, which can make them swell and bleed more easily.
Is it really a big deal?
If you tend to hit the sheets without flossing, break that habit. In fact, some dentists recommend brushing and flossing twice-a-day at least.
Are your toothbrush bristles soft and pliable? If not, swap it out. Better yet, invest in an electric toothbrush which is gentler on the gums.
Speak with your doctor about medications or medical conditions that could be causing bleeding or swollen gums. They might also test you for vitamin deficiencies, infections, and more.
Do I need a professional diagnosis?
In some cases, symptoms will clear up on their own. This is often true for injuries, such as a burn to the mouth. If symptoms remain, your dentist can review the frequency and severity of your concerns and recommend an appropriate treatment. Your doctor may also perform an oral exam and measure periodontal pockets if you suffer from gum disease.
If your gums are infected, the doctor might also apply topical antibiotics. These can kill harmful bacteria and allow the soft tissue to heal.
Gum disease often requires ongoing treatment. Some people may require more frequent cleanings to control the growth of bacteria. Typically, these patients will need to visit a dentist or periodontist every three months.
A professional can help restore your oral health...
Your periodontal health directly impacts your overall health and well-being. Schedule an appointment with a dentist today to learn more about restoring a healthy smile.
Dr Perry is a great dentist. Very kind and informative. I feel like he is personally invested in my health. He always takes the time to sit and discuss any issues I'm having - I never feel like they're rushing me out.