If your gums bleed after your brush or floss your teeth, don’t panic. Bleeding gums can occur due to several reasons. Some are more dangerous than others. Luckily, bleeding gums can be prevented by proper dental hygiene and routine dental cleanings and checkups.
Below are some of the most common culprits of bleeding gums and ways you can prevent or reverse them.
Gingivitis can cause your gums to swell, become tender, and sometimes bleed while you brush. Gingivitis is the initial stage of gum disease that occurs when plaque that coats your teeth and gums is not removed and infects your gum line. Poor dental hygiene is the major culprit of gingivitis. This mild form of gum infection can eventually develop into severe periodontal disease if untreated. Fortunately, it can be reversed easily if caught early. If our gums show any early signs of gingivitis, consider seeing your dental specialist right away. If the dentist confirms that you have gingivitis, you should know that this condition can trigger other health problems, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and even cancer.
Different types of medications aimed at preventing or treating blood clots can potentially result in bleeding gums. Blood thinners are designed to keep your blood cells from sticking together. This can cause minor bruising and bleeding from gums as you floss and brush your teeth. Be sure to inform your dental specialist and family doctor about the issues you experience and the medicines you take during your routine appointments. If bleeding worsens over time, seek immediate medical care.
3. Changes in your dental hygiene
If you’ve never used dental floss before, your gums may bleed a little when you first begin flossing between your teeth. This issue should subside within a week. If it doesn’t, reach out to your dental specialist, as this may be a symptom of the earliest stage of gum disease.
Your gums may also bleed if you’re using a firm-bristled toothbrush. In this case, try switching to a soft-bristled one and ask your dental specialist about the type of toothbrush that will suit you the best during your next visit.
4. Flossing or brushing too aggressively
You may spot some blood on your toothbrush or in the sink if you brush or floss too aggressively. However, avoid giving up the practice, as both brushing and flossing are essential for good dental health. Instead, switch to a soft-bristled toothbrush and be gentle enough not to damage your teeth or gums when your clean your mouth. Your gums should stop pouring blood within a week.
5. Pregnancy gingivitis
Expectant mothers may experience inflamed gums and bleeding during brushing or flossing. According to the American Pregnancy Association, this problem is called pregnancy gingivitis. This condition occurs when pregnancy-related hormonal imbalance changes your body’s response to bacteria that trigger gingivitis, resulting in inflammation. Regularly brushing and flossing your teeth and visiting routine cleanings and checkups are essential steps you should take to prevent bleeding and inflammation from worsening.
The bottom line
If you’re subjected to any of the aforementioned culprits, don’t let them compromise your dental health and result in the onset of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, or stroke. Instead, reach out to an experienced dental specialist to determine the precise cause of your problem and receive appropriate treatment. To prevent or help treat bleeding gums, make sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day, use the correct brushing technique, and use mouthwash at least a few times a week. If you suspect that your bleeding gums result from the medicines you take, ask your physician about adjusting your dosage or changing the drug completely.