Do your gums bleed when brushing or flossing your teeth?
This is often a common sign of gum disease and should be addressed by Dr. Sousa to avoid damage to the gums and teeth. Bacteria found in plaque produce toxins or poisons that irritate the gums, which may cause them to turn red, swell and bleed easily. If this irritation is prolonged, the gums separate from the teeth, causing pockets (spaces) to form. As periodontal diseases progress, the supporting gum tissue and bone that holds teeth in place deteriorate. If left untreated, this leads to tooth loss.
Gum disease is a leading cause of poor oral health and tooth loss, and can be largely preventable with periodontal therapy and routine dental care. Keeping the gums healthy is important- they support your teeth and serve as a barrier between harmful bacteria in the mouth and your bloodstream.
At East Hills Dental Associates, we emphasize the importance of maintaining periodontal health and work with patients on an individual basis to identify risk factors for gum disease. Our one-on-one approach to dental care means that we can offer personalized hygiene advice for your specific needs to help you avoid common dental problems.
In addition to genetics, there are a range of factors that can impact your gum health:
- Tobacco use, smoking
- Teeth grinding, jaw clenching
- Diabetes, systemic disease
- Poor nutrition
Stages of Gum Disease
Periodontal disease has two distinct stages, characterized by specific symptoms. Dr. Sousa will evaluate your gums and determine the stage of disease before recommending treatment.
- Gingivitis: the early stage of gum disease, the signs of gingivitis include bleeding gums, red or swollen gums and increased sensitivity. Conservative treatment is often successful when addressing gingivitis, making routine dental care an important part of avoiding advanced disease and the need for complex treatment.
- Periodontitis: gum disease that has progressed to periodontitis is characterized by changes in the gum line, shifting teeth, loose teeth, bone loss and gum recession. Without treatment, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss and permanent damage to your dental health.
Treating Bleeding Gums
Dr. Sousa offers periodontal therapy treatment options to address the stage and severity of your gum disease. From personalized at home care advice to oral surgery to remove diseased tissue, our team can work with you to restore gum and oral health with appropriate care. Give us a call at (516) 253-6873, or request an appointment online today.
Bleeding Gums FAQs
It is normal for gums to bleed when you first begin to floss?
If you have just added flossing to your daily oral hygiene routine, sometimes the gums will be bleed while the soft tissue in the mouth adjust. However, this should only be a minimal amount of blood that stops bleeding rather quickly. If daily flossing results in bleeding gums for longer than a week, you may be suffering from gingivitis and will need to be treated by Dr. Sousa.
How can I prevent bleeding gums?
You can prevent your gums from bleeding by taking good care of your health especially your oral health. In doing so, you will prevent gum disease, the leading cause of bleeding gums. Dr. Sousa recommends brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride based toothpaste, flossing once a day, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, eating plenty healthy foods rich in vitamins and minerals, never using tobacco, and visiting your dentist every six months for a regular checkup.
Does smoking cause bleeding gums?
Using any form of tobacco will cause serious damage to your gums that can result in bleeding gums. People who use tobacco regularly are at a higher risk for developing gum disease. Tobacco can also cause sore gums, sensitive teeth and painful sores in the mouth.