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There are many dental problems or issues that we could experience during our life time. One of the most worrying and one of the ones which warrant greatest concern is that of bleeding gums (called gingivitis.) This is because if the problem is left untreated it can get worse, (leading to gum disease – called periodontitis.) This makes the problem become essentially past being treatable, and ultimately results in bone decay and tooth loss. Knowing what to do and how to stop it is key. In this article we will explore these points more.
Obviously the easiest way to tell is whether you ‘spit’ blood when you clean your teeth, or see your gums bleeding when the brush glides over the surface. Gums will also appear red, inflamed and swollen if there is an issue.
Generally speaking bleeding gums leads to gum disease which can lead to tooth loss. It is a process which normally happens in stages. Some of the more advanced stages of gum disease can present symptoms such as bad breath and loose teeth.
If you have bleeding gums, then pay particular attention to this because some simple changes could help reverse the problem. For more complicated or long term gum disease problems, visit a dentist who will be able to advise on the best course of treatment tailored to your situation.
Bleeding gums are often caused as a secondary effect of something else, and don’t usually occur for no reason or as a standalone issue. Some of these primary reasons which could lead to bleeding gums include:
A build-up of plaque can irritate the gums and make them become inflamed. Although plaque can easily be removed, it some cases it is not, or it is in a difficult place. Prolonged plaque build-up can increase the risk of bleeding gums and associated issues.
Generally people are more susceptible to bleeding gums as they get older. That said, taking care in other ways can still help reduce your susceptibility.
Smoking has many negative effects for the mouth, one of which is the contribution towards gum disease.
Watch what you are eating, as lack of vitamins or minerals can increase the chance of bleeding gums. Vitamin C is a big (but not the only) dietary inclusion to help with this problem.
Some conditions such as diabetes can all make bleeding gums and gum disease more likely.
If bleeding gums and gum disease do progress or get left untreated then a dentist will normally recommend the following:
This is a special mouthwash wash which is different from the one you would normally use every day. The special formula helps with bleeding gums by destroying bacteria. It is normally quite a strong product.
This essentially involves a good clean of the mouth, teeth and gum areas with scraping away and polishing any tartar and plaque which has built up thus relieving the gum area.
This procedure again involves removing bacteria but this is concerned with what is happening under the gums (at the roots.) This is considered a more advanced treatment.
If gum disease has reached the latter stages then periodontal surgery may be required which can involve removing affected teeth. A dentist or specialist may carry out any procedures at this stage.
To find out more on gum disease visit our dedicated page by clicking the link.