Bleeding gums is not normal. Healthy gums are firm, pink and don’t bleed during brushing and flossing. The bleeding happens if there is inflammation,
Bleeding gums can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
– gum disease
– vitamin deficiencies
– hormonal changes
– side effect of certain medications
– poor oral hygiene
The most common cause of bleeding gums is gum disease, also known as gingivitis or periodontitis in more advanced stages, when the jaw bone is also affected. This condition occurs when the gums become inflamed due to bacteria in plaque and calculus build up, causing the gums to swell, bleed and pull away from the teeth
The typical symptoms of gingivitis include bleeding gums, especially during brushing or flossing, bad breath, receding gums, and changes in the colour or texture of the gums (inflamed gums look red and puffy). If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to a more severe form of gum disease known as periodontal disease, which can lead to tooth mobility and ultimately tooth loss.
Research has shown that tobacco products, such as cigarettes and vape can be very detrimental to the gum health, contributing to the development of gum disease. Smoking and vaping can decrease blood flow to the gums, which can make it more difficult for the body to fight off infections. It can also dry out the mouth, which can lead to a decrease in saliva production.
Saliva is important for flushing away food particles and bacteria from the mouth, and a decrease in saliva can contribute to the development of gum disease. In addition, some of the chemicals found in vaping liquids have been shown to have harmful effects on the gums and other oral tissues. For example, some studies have suggested that exposure to flavoring chemicals in e-cigarettes can cause damage to gum tissue.
To prevent bleeding gums, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist twice a year for check-ups and cleanings. Additionally, eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals can help promote healthy gums. If you are experiencing bleeding gums, it is important to see a Sydney dentist as soon as possible for an evaluation and treatment.
The treatment for gum disease depends on the severity of the condition. Mild cases of gum disease, such as gingivitis, can usually be treated with improved oral hygiene habits and a professional cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist. This typically involves removing any plaque and tartar build up from the teeth and gums, and teaching the patient how to properly care for their teeth and gums at home.
For more severe cases of gum disease, additional treatments may be necessary. This may include:
- Scaling and root planning: This is a deep cleaning procedure that removes plaque and tartar build up from below the gum line, and smooths the surfaces of the tooth roots to help prevent bacteria from adhering to them.
- Medications: Antibiotics or antimicrobial medications may be prescribed to help control the infection and reduce inflammation.
- Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove diseased tissue or to reshape the gums to help prevent further damage
Gingivitis is treatable and reversible if detected in early stages. Once it progresses into periodontitis and the bone is damaged, it is irreversible.
If your gums are bleeding, don’t wait to seek for treatment.
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