Photo of Bleeding Gums

Why Are My Gums Bleeding? Hicksville, NY

Written By: Dr. Nadia Rivera

When you notice that your gums are bleeding, it’s normal to feel concerned. Sometimes, it can be caused by improper brushing or flossing techniques. Other times, it could be more serious. Regular dental visits will ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy. If your gums are bleeding regularly, you will want to find out the underlying condition that is causing this symptom. 

What Causes Bleeding Gums?

The most worrisome cause behind bleeding gums is gingivitis. This condition is caused by the untreated buildup of plaque at the gum line. As gingivitis evolves, it causes inflamed gums, making them swollen, tender, and prone to bleeding while you brush or floss.

Gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease, and it’s urgent that you take it seriously. Left untreated, the condition can worsen into gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. As it progresses, your teeth will appear longer and they will begin to loosen, eventually falling out.

If you live in Hicksville, NY, it is imperative that you get a dental checkup immediately if you notice bleeding, swollen, red, or irritated gums. You will want to get ahead of gum disease before it destroys your smile.

What Causes Gum Disease?

Gum disease is most commonly caused by poor oral hygiene. When plaque and tartar build up underneath your gums, it can create a dangerous situation. You’re much more likely to have heart problems such as a heart attack or stroke when you don’t seek treatment for this condition.

Pregnant women are also prone to gum disease as are those who smoke or have diabetes. Certain medications may also be to blame. Again, you will want to have your dentist take a look at your bleeding gums and develop a treatment plan.

How to Manage and Treat Gum Disease

Once gum disease starts, there is no cure. You will need to work with your dentist to manage it to keep it from worsening and impacting your overall health. Here is what you will need to do to manage gum disease. 

Improve Your Oral Hygiene

Regular brushing and flossing can help keep your mouth healthy even with gum disease. You should do so twice daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Even better, use an electric toothbrush, which will help you brush food away from the gum line. Many people don’t know the right technique for flossing, so ask your dentist to show you how. You’ll need to use the floss to get between your teeth all the way down each side. 

Follow with Mouthwash

Mouthwash is another way to kill off the harmful bacteria that are hindering the health of your gums. Ask your dentist for a recommendation for an antiseptic mouthwash that will help your oral health.

See Your Dentist Regularly

Professional dental cleanings are imperative for a healthy mouth. If you do not have gum disease, your dentist will schedule you for cleanings twice per year. However, if you are diagnosed with gum disease, you will need to get your cleanings four times a year.

A deep cleaning will likely be advised to help manage your gum health. Root planing and scaling are other procedures that your dentist can use to remove the plaque and tartar buildup underneath the gums. 

Other Causes of Bleeding Gums

After going to your dentist for your checkup, you may get good news that you do not have gum disease. Then why are your gums bleeding? Here are some other reasons why your gums are bleeding.

You’re Brushing Too Hard

Brushing with a heavy hand doesn’t result in cleaner teeth. Instead, it can make your gums bleed as well as recede. Instead, adjust your technique—your dentist can show you how. You should also use a soft-bristled toothbrush to prevent irritating your gums. Electric toothbrushes make this daily hygienic habit much easier and allow you to brush without putting excess pressure.

You may notice that your gums bleed when you floss, which is likely the result of not flossing in a while. It’s normal for this to happen, and once you get into a daily flossing routine, you shouldn’t notice any bleeding. Have your dentist show you how to floss the right way and you’ll be sure to remove all that plaque from between your gums and teeth.

Denture Woes

If you wear dentures, you may notice bleeding gums. If it’s not gum disease, then it’s a sign that your dentures are not a proper fit. They will scratch the gums and leave painful sores behind. Wearing your dentures while you sleep can also make your gums prone to bleeding. Speak with your dentist about your dentures to have them properly fitted, and be sure you’re keeping your teeth and gums clean to prevent inflammation.

Photo of Dental Checkup

Pregnancy

Hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy can leave you with swollen, red, and tender gums. If you are pregnant and you notice that your gums bleed when you brush or floss, it is fairly normal. However, you should make sure to visit your dentist for a cleaning to help prevent serious problems from taking hold. 

Improper Diet

You may be relieved to hear that you don’t have gum disease, but it could be your diet that’s leaving your gums bloody. Processed foods have ingredients that can be irritating to your gums. It’s best to limit or avoid processed and sugary foods. Add in more fresh fruits and vegetables, plus foods that are rich in calcium. Aim to eat the full spectrum of essential vitamins and minerals each day to give your body what it needs for overall health and you’ll be taking great steps towards keeping your oral health in check, too. 

Another Health Condition

Bleeding gums are more common for those with certain health problems. If you do not have gum disease, you may want to schedule an appointment with your general practitioner to find out what health condition may be behind your symptoms.

If you are experiencing bleeding gums, don’t wait to visit a dentist. Are you looking for a dentist in Hicksville, NY? Call today to schedule an appointment with R+R Dental to get treatment for bleeding gums.

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