How To Stop Bleeding Gums (Periodontal Disease)
While we care deeply about how our teeth look, it’s easy to forget our gums that provide important support for our teeth. If any other part of our body was bleeding regularly, we probably would be quite alarmed. Yet somehow when it’s our gums that are bleeding we choose to ignore it, simply because it doesn’t hurt. However, that little pink in the sink could be a huge indicator for serious gum (periodontal) disease which, if left untreated, can lead to tooth loss and even heart disease.
What causes bleeding gums
For individuals who don’t brush and floss properly, bacteria in the mouth forms plaque on the teeth. Bleeding gums often caused by these dental plaque, where millions of bacterial live, around the gum line. As plaque builds up, it irritates the gums and causes an infection which results in red, swollen, or bleeding gums. Hence, an early stage of gum disease, gingivitis is developed which can be reversed if caught early and maintained with proper oral hygiene. Without early treatment though, gingivitis can worsen as plaque hardens into tartar (calculus).
Why you can’t ignore gum disease
As gingivitis progresses, it develops into periodontitis, a condition in which the gums and the jaw bone that hold the teeth in place can be significantly weakened. The bacteria accumulated on the teeth release toxins that damage your gums and cause them to become infected. The infection eventually results in your body attacking the bacteria, causing your gums and the bone in your jaw to degrade.
Furthermore, the bacterial can access other organs in your body via the bloodstream and thus cause bigger problems such as:
- Heart disease
- Increased risk for stroke
- Increase the chance of having preterm, low birth weight babies
How to stop gums from bleeding
Improving oral hygiene is the key to eliminate bleeding gums. Here are some tips on keeping you mouth clean and healthy thus prevent or reduce gum disease.
- Brush with soft toothbrush in a circular motion for at least two minutes twice a day.
- Floss daily along and beyond the gum line to remove plaque and prevent tartar.
- Rinse with salt water or anti-bacterial mouth wash.
- Stay away from cigarette as they aggravate bleeding gums.
- Have a balanced diet that contains plenty of vitamin C and calcium
- Visit your dentist or a dental hygienist twice a year for regular cleaning to remove plaque and tartar that can’t be removed by brushing and flossing.
- A deep cleaning (scaling and root planing) may be needed for severe cases.
- Don’t ignore the problem and treat it early before it develops into periodontitis.