If your lip, nose, or leg started bleeding, you would probably try to determine why it’s bleeding and how you can stop it. Bleeding gums, however, are often overlooked as a major problem. Keeping your gums healthy will help protect your smile. If your gums are red, swollen, tender, or bleeding, visit Dr. Burds immediately to address the situation.
Common Causes of Bleeding Gums
- Irritation: If you brush your teeth too hard, you may be damaging your gum tissue. Rough toothbrush bristles may poke and weaken your gums. Furious scrubbing can also wear away your tooth enamel and lead to gum recession. Additionally, ill-fitting dentures, retainers, mouth guards, and other oral appliances may rub or cut your gums and other soft tissues, creating pain, irritation, and bleeding. When your gum tissue becomes cut or wounded, bacteria can easily enter your bloodstream and infect other areas of your body, including your heart.
- Irregular Flossing: If you haven’t flossed in a while, you may notice your gums hurt and bleed a little. Flossing helps regulate blood circulation to your gums. Flossing daily will also help strengthen your gums. You should also make sure you’re using a smooth dental floss that will slide easily between your teeth and gum line, and be sure you’re not digging into your gums too much.
- Gum Disease: In many cases, bleeding gums are a sign of periodontal disease. Plaque buildup along your gum line can harden into tartar, which irritates and infects your gum tissue. Untreated gum disease can lead to tooth loss, as well as an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes complications, pregnancy complications, and other health problems. Gum disease is a progressive condition, but Dr. Burds and your dental hygienists can treat the problem to allow your gums to heal. Non-surgical treatments include scaling and root planing to remove bacteria from the gum line, and antibiotics to reduce inflammation and bacterial growth.
Proper daily dental care will help keep your gums strong and healthy. If your gums bleed, contact Dr. Burds to determine the cause of your dental discomfort. Call Gateway Dental Group at (515) 244-9565 to schedule periodontal therapy. Our dentist office in Des Moines, Iowa welcomes patients from Des Moines, River Bend, Kirkwood Glen, East Village, and neighboring communities.