17 Aug Common Causes for Bleeding Gums
Bleeding gums maybe a sign of a health issue with your mouth or in your body. There are a number of reasons why gums might bleed, and depending on frequency and severity, may require a visit to your dentist. Here is a checklist to consider if your gums are bleeding.
Dental Reasons Gums May Bleed
Bleeding gums is fairly common. Catching your gum on hard food like chips, poking it with a toothpick, catching it with a piece of floss, are minor accidents that may cause gums to bleed for a short time. When bleeding occurs regularly, it is time to contact your dentist for a checkup.
Lack of Flossing – If you have recently started flossing your gums or are a periodic flosser, gums may bleed at first until the area becomes use to the floss. Bleeding should stop with continued flossing, an important part of dental hygiene to remove food particles trapped between teeth.
Brushing too Hard – A soft toothbrush and gentle strokes is all you need to effectively clean your teeth. Brushing too hard or using a toothbrush with hard bristles, can irritate gums causing them to bleed.
Gum Disease – In absence of a proper dental routine, plaque buildup will occur at the base of the teeth. As bacteria continues to multiply, tooth decay and gum disease become more prevalent. Gums become infected and inflamed, and if not treated by a dentist, can develop into periodontal disease. Gum disease and plaque buildup can also cause gingivitis – a severe form of bad breath.
Tooth Infection – Bleeding gums are a sign that something may be wrong in your mouth. When accompanied by tooth pain, sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, or discomfort during chewing, you may have a tooth infection. Contact your dentist right away to heal the infection and stop it from spreading.
Poorly Fit Denture – Dentures with a poor fit can cause significant irritation to the gumline causing bleeding. If your denture pinches your mouth too tight, or moves around loosely, contact your denture provider for a review and new fitting.
Health Reasons Gums May Bleed
Bleeding gums may happen for other health reasons not related to the mouth. Certain diseases and medications can cause gum sensitivity. Other reasons include:
Pregnancy – During pregnancy, hormones change and run on high. Gums may become inflamed and sensitive. Use an extra soft brush and light pressure when brushing to protect sensitive gums from bleeding.
Vitamin Deficiency – Our body sends us signals when it is deficient in necessary nutrients. Continued bleeding of gums may be a sign of vitamin C or vitamin K deficiency. Talk to your dentist or physician if you have concerns about your nutrient intake.
Leukemia – Some forms of leukemia and other diseases may cause swelling of gums resulting in bleeding. Not all individuals with leukemia will have bleeding gums, and gums may bleed for other reasons. If you are being treated for a health issue and notice your gums bleeding regularly, contact your dentist for a checkup.
Blood Thinners – Individuals on blood thinners have to take extra precaution throughout the day. A minor cut or fall can turn into a more serious situation. If you are on blood thinners, your gums may be more sensitive and prone to bleeding. Brush twice daily with a soft brush and gentle strokes, taking care around the gums.
It’s important to inform your dentist of any medical conditions, prescriptions, and over-the-counter medicines you are taking. Keep up with a daily routine of brushing twice, flossing once, and rinsing with mouthwash. Visit your dentist twice per year for a thorough checkup. When continually bleeding occurs, schedule an appointment right away to rule out any concerns.
At Imperial Dental Center, our goal is to provide the best dental care to our patients to ensure the health of their mouth and whole body. Contact us today at (281) 265-3567 or schedule an online appointment to discuss any dental concerns you may have.
Dr. Dragana Angelova
Imperial Dental Center
“We love to see you smile”