When you brush your teeth, do you ever notice your gums bleeding? What about when you floss? In most cases, gums that bleed easily are warning signs of gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease. This is a chronic condition that can cause inflammation, irritation and eventually lead to the loss of teeth. Fortunately, with prompt dental treatment the signs of gingivitis, including bleeding gums, can often be reversed. Just don’t delay a dental visit, if your gums or teeth are showing signs of trouble.
Could Flossing Be to Blame?
Many people want to blame flossing for their gums’ sensitivity, likely because they only notice their gums bleeding when they floss. However, flossing is rarely a cause of bleeding. The underlying cause is generally due to plaque bacteria buildup, the same substance responsible for creating dental cavities.
When plaque is allowed to remain in the mouth, due to poor dental hygiene or other mitigating factors, it can lead to irritation of the gums, which can eventually cause gum disease. Besides bleeding, other indicators of gum disease include visible inflammation, or redness or a dark purple coloring of the gums. Healthy gum tissue should be light pink in color!
How Can Gingivitis Be Treated?
The best course of action to reverse the symptoms of gingivitis is through a professional dental cleaning. If gingivitis has progressed, however, the dentist may recommend a periodontal cleaning in addition to a traditional dental cleaning.
A periodontal cleaning involves more deeply cleaning, particularly along the gumline, in order to remove the bacteria that can cause inflammation.