Have you ever left a bloody bite mark on an apple or noticed a puddle of pink foam in the sink after you spit? If so, then you may be wondering why your gums are bleeding. Gum health is something that many people don’t think about until they notice their gums bleeding. Bleeding gums can have various different causes. In this blog post we will discuss five reasons why your gums may be bleeding and what you can do to fix it.
Reason One: Gum Disease
One of the most common reasons why gums may bleed is because of gum disease. When plaque and tartar build-up on your teeth, this provides a place for bacteria to grow and thrive. Eventually, the bacteria infects the gum tissue and causes inflammation. Mild gum disease is called gingivitis and severe gum disease is called periodontitis. Although bleeding may be a sign of both types, other symptoms of gum disease also include gums that are red, tender, or swollen. If left untreated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss and other serious health problems. You can prevent gum disease by practicing good oral hygiene and having regular dental cleanings.
Reason Two: Aggressive Brushing or Flossing Technique
If you have sensitive gums, then it may be a sign that your brushing and flossing technique is too aggressive. Brushing too hard does not actually get your teeth any cleaner, rather it can cause problems. For starters, brushing too hard or using a hard bristled toothbrush irritates your gums and makes them more susceptible to gum disease. Not only that, but brushing too hard or using a hard bristled toothbrush also causes the enamel on your teeth to wear down faster, which can lead to tooth sensitivity and decay. When you brush your teeth, make sure to use gentle pressure while moving the bristles of the toothbrush in small circles around each tooth. Also, when you floss your teeth, try to avoid snapping the floss on your gums. Flossing too aggressively can cause your gums to recede, which increases the risk of gum disease.
Reason Three: Oral Hygiene Changes
Another reason why your gums are bleeding is a change in your oral hygiene routine. One common example of this is when you start flossing after not flossing for a while. When you don’t floss daily, the act of flossing can actually cause your gums to bleed for about a week until they adjust. Another common example of an oral hygiene change that makes gums bleed is changing toothbrushes. Although you are supposed to switch toothbrushes every 3-4 months, you may notice your gums start to bleed when you use the new toothbrush. This is usually because the bristles on your new brush are not worn and are stiffer than your old toothbrush. In most cases, your gums will stop bleeding once they have adjusted.
Reason Four: Medications
There are many different medications that are used to treat various ailments, while also increasing the risk of bleeding gums. Some common medications associated with causing bleeding gums include blood pressure medication, anti-inflammatory medication, and blood thinning medications such as warfarin, heparin, or aspirin. You should never stop taking medications without speaking to your doctor, however you may want to bring up your concerns about bleeding gums to determine if there is another medication available.
Reason Five: Pregnancy
Gum health is one area that can easily get ignored during pregnancy since many pregnant women are more concerned with morning sickness or visiting their OBGYN than their oral hygiene routine. However, the hormonal changes associated with pregnancy make the mouth extremely sensitive to bacteria. As a result, pregnant women are more likely to develop “pregnancy gingivitis”. Besides causing the gums to be red, swollen, and tender, gum disease while pregnant has also been linked to pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia, preterm labor, and low birth weight. Therefore, it is important for pregnant women to keep their gums healthy in order to prevent health problems for both the mother and baby.
If you are experiencing bleeding gums, then please visit your dentist as soon as possible. Since there are many different reasons why your gums are bleeding, it can be hard to determine the cause on your own. Your dentist will be able to diagnose the cause of your bleeding gums and recommend an appropriate treatment plan. It is important to address bleeding gums as soon as possible, because gum disease has been linked to a variety of health problems such as tooth decay, heart disease, and stroke. So don’t wait – make an appointment with your dentist today!