Have you noticed your gums bleed after brushing your teeth?
After brushing or flossing, bleeding gums may reveal themselves. Although somewhat common, this may sometimes be the first symptom of oral health problems. Further, you may not know whether these problems are minor or serious.
Your gums are an important part of your oral health – if you want a healthy mouth, you can’t afford to ignore the causes of your unhealthy gums!
What causes bleeding or inflamed gums?
When bleeding gums occur, one thing is for sure: ignoring will eventually lead to serious gum problems and perhaps, health problems too.
Think of bleeding, sensitive or swollen gums as the metaphorical canary in the coal mine.
While they don’t necessarily raise alarm bells on their own, they are often the first sign of something worse.
The causes of bleeding gums can include the following:
- Improper brushing and/or flossing routine
- Certain types of medication
- Poor nutrition
- Teeth grinding
Left untreated, bleeding or inflamed gums can be a sign of serious gum disease such as gingivitis or periodontitis.
Fortunately, frequent visits to your dentist help detect and find out the cause and the solution of such gum disease. If you don’t already make a habit of seeing your oral health expert regularly, you could be at risk of gingivitis or even periodontitis.
What is gingivitis?
The first stage of many types of gum disease is gingivitis. Gingivitis is the inflammation of gums, caused by plaque build-up.
What is plaque, you ask? Simply, dental plaque is a sticky, colourless film of bacteria and harder build-ups that coats your teeth.
Your mouth is full of bacteria, so this isn’t automatically a bad thing. There are over 700 types we know of, many of which help your mouth stay healthy!
Plaque is different. It irritates the gums, which leads to common gum problems like:
If you don’t brush regularly (or do a poor job of it), plaque can harden into tartar, which is significantly harder to remove and puts further strain on your poor gums.
Fortunately, good oral hygiene practices can put a stop to plaque growth.
Proper brushing and flossing (or other interproximal cleaning), plus regular dental check-up can help prevent cavities, bad breath and gingivitis.
What is periodontitis?
Untreated gingivitis can further lead to periodontitis. Periodontitis is a more advanced and serious gum disease that can even result in tooth loss.
Periodontitis weakens the gums and supporting bone – in particular, the gum margin, adjacent bone that seals and holds your teeth in place.
Bacteria can wedge itself into these gaps, causing further inflammation, weakening the gums and even causing the gum to recede.
Over time, this can even affect the tooth root attachment of your teeth to your jawbone.
That’s not the only effect periodontitis can have on your health.
If the eyes are the window to your soul, then your mouth is the front door to your body. Problems here can have knock-on effects to the rest of your physical well-being, including:
- Increased risk of heart attacks and stroke
- Increased risk of diabetes
- Respiratory diseases
How can I prevent bleeding gums?
At Dental Care Group, we believe that prevention is better than any cure. Fortunately, gum disease is easy to prevent… as long as you have the right habits!
Follow these simple and helpful tips that anyone can do from home to prevent further gum bleeding:
Gently brush and floss your teeth
Use soft bristles to brush your teeth and gently floss (or use other between the teeth devices) twice a day to prevent plaque build-up.
Generally, soft-bristled toothbrushes are better for your teeth and gums. If you suffer from gum bleeding, we can prescribe extra-gentle toothbrushes.
These days, electric toothbrushes, and electric flossers are very effective and efficient, and they are less expensive than they ever were.
Visit your dentist for regular check-ups
If bleeding gums persist or bleeding became severe or unexplainable, we urge you to schedule a visit to your dentist ASAP.
Your dentist will both examine your teeth and gums and will assess your oral hygiene, diet or any medications you take recently.
Find out how Dental Care Group can help you overcome gum disease. Click here to learn more about gum treatments.
Get effective treatments for bleeding gums, courtesy of your friendly Armadale dentist!
Based right on the border between Armadale, Malvern and Prahran, Dental Care Group offers comprehensive treatments for all sorts of oral health problems.
We solve all sorts of dental problems through bleeding-edge treatments, education and ongoing check-ups.
What’s more, we do it with a gentle, caring, and human touch.
We know that many people suffer from dental phobias, so we do our best to make the experience as pleasant as possible.