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Bleeding gums - A warning signal for your oral health

Bleeding gums are common, yet often an underestimated sign that something is wrong with your oral health. In this blog post, we will discuss the causes, symptoms and treatments of bleeding gums and how you can maintain and promote healthy gums through proper dental care.

Andrea Seraina Author
Andrea Seraina
Dental Content Specialist
26.07.20235 min. reading time

Most common causes of bleeding gums

The predominant cause of bleeding gums is inflammation of the gums, also known as gingivitis. This is caused by plaque, which is composed of food residues, bacteria and their metabolic products. If oral hygiene is poor, this plaque can remain on the teeth for a long time, hardening and thus contributing to the development of inflammation. This plaque irritates the gums, also known as the gingiva, causing redness, swelling and eventually bleeding gums. This is a warning sign that you should not ignore.

In addition to the obvious signs of redness and swelling, other symptoms of gingivitis can include bad breath and sensitive gums. If these early warning signs are ignored and gingivitis is not treated, it can progress to periodontal disease, a more serious form of gum disease, which in the worst case can lead to tooth loss.

But plaque is not the only cause of bleeding and swollen gums. There are other health conditions, such as hormonal changes during pregnancy, systemic diseases like diabetes mellitus, anemia or in rare cases even leukemia, which can make the gums more susceptible to inflammation.

Avoid bleeding gums through proper dental care

Avoiding bleeding gums and associated gum disease requires consistent and thorough dental care. However, optimal dental care extends far beyond simple tooth brushing and encompasses a wide range of measures, from the careful selection of appropriate dental care products, to the correct brushing technique for cleaning the spaces between the teeth, to the maintenance of healthy oral flora and oral mucosa.

Thorough brushing undoubtedly plays a crucial role in maintaining healthy gums and teeth. It removes plaque that accumulates on the visible surfaces of the teeth and is crucial for thorough oral hygiene and the prevention of bleeding gums. Whether you use a manual toothbrush or an electric toothbrush, you should choose a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid hurting your gums and damaging the sensitive gum line.

However, brushing alone is not enough. Flossing or interdental brushes should be part of your daily routine as they help to clean the hard-to-reach spaces between teeth. This is crucial as this is often where food debris and bacteria build up, which can cause both bleeding gums and tooth decay.

Choosing the right toothpaste can also make a significant difference. A toothpaste with fluoride can help strengthen tooth enamel and reduce the buildup of plaque. Some toothpastes also contain antibacterial ingredients that help control the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth. For optimal prevention of dental disease, we recommend our Whitening Toothpastes, especially Anti-Plaque Toothpaste, which prevents plaque formation with natural ingredients, effectively minimising the risk of diseased teeth and gums.

Regular use of mouthwashes can also help reduce bacteria in the mouth and prevent gingivitis. They provide an extra layer of cleaning, especially in areas that are difficult for toothbrushes and floss to reach. You can also try rinsing your mouth with warm salt water. However, you should keep in mind that mouthwashes should not replace brushing and flossing, but should only be a supplement to daily oral hygiene.

In addition to these care practices, a healthy diet also plays an important role in maintaining healthy oral flora and preventing bleeding gums. A diet rich in vitamins and minerals and low in sugar can help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Crucial to this is the inclusion of Vitamins C and K, as vitamin deficiencies can be possible causes of bleeding gums. Vitamin C aids in maintaining the health of your gums while Vitamin K is essential for blood clotting. So ensure your diet is balanced and rich in these vitamins, to complement your oral hygiene practices for a comprehensive approach to preventing gum disease.

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Gum bleeding treatment

If you regularly suffer from bleeding gums despite good oral hygiene, you should consider an oral health check-up, where you will be recommended the appropriate treatment if necessary. Treatment depends on the cause of the bleeding. For gingivitis or periodontitis, a professional dental cleaning may be performed, which includes advice on improved dental care techniques at home.

More serious conditions, such as periodontitis, might require a deep cleaning of the gum pockets called curettage. In some cases, medication or surgery may also be required to heal the gums and entire periodontium and save teeth that are at risk from advanced periodontitis. For this, we can recommend you to a dentist we trust.

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Professional dental cleaning and dental examinations

Regular professional cleanings are crucial for the prevention and early detection of gum disease. Professional dental cleanings thoroughly remove plaque, tartar and harmful bacteria, especially in areas that are often difficult to reach during daily dental care with a toothbrush or interdental brush. Check-up appointments are equally important for the prevention of bleeding gums. These Oral Health CheckUps can detect signs of gum disease early and initiate appropriate dental treatment before the problem becomes more serious.

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