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Gum bleeding

Does your gum bleed when you brush, floss, or eat? Gum bleeding could be an early sign of gum disease or a sign of a more serious medical condition.

Gum bleedingGum bleeding is most commonly due to gum disease. Gum disease is an inflammation of the gum caused by plaque accumulation on the teeth at the gum line. If not removed through daily regularly cleaning, plaque can build up. Bacteria in the plaque can then infect your gum causing gingivitis. Gingivitis is the mildest form of periodontal disease. It causes the gums to become red, swollen, and bleed easily. Untreated gingivitis can advance to periodontitis. With time, plaque can spread and grow below the gum line. Gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets (spaces between the teeth and gums) that become infected causing more gum bleeding.

Gum bleeding may also be caused by hormonal changes during puberty and pregnancy. Having swollen, red, tender gums that bleed when you floss or brush is a common complaint during pregnancy. About half of moms-to-be have these symptoms – a condition known as pregnancy gingivitis. Gum bleeding could also be a sign of a serious medical problem such as bleeding disorders, leukemia or the use of blood thinners.

Gum bleeding can be easily prevented. Brush often and properly but don’t brush too vigorously, and use a gentle, circular motion rather than a back-and-forth motion. Be sure to brush at least twice a day or after every meal. Do not use a hard brush which can cause gum irritation. Floss regularly as flossing removes the food particles that linger in between your teeth and can lead to plaque build-up that can cause gum bleeding. Take a few minutes every day to make flossing a priority. You should visit your dentist for a professional cleaning and dental exam at least twice in a year. This can help prevent early gum disease from progressing into more serious gum disease.

If you gum bleeds, avoid the use of tobacco, which aggravates bleeding gums.If you have been diagnosed with a vitamin deficiency, take recommended vitamin supplements.Avoid aspirin unless your health care provider has recommended that you take it.Use an oral irrigation device on the low setting to massage the gums.See your dentist if your dentures do not fit correctly or if they are causing sore spots in your gums.Coming soon.

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