What to do if your gums are bleeding

Bleeding gums could be a sign of an underlying issue, and should not be ignored.

If you have noticed that your gums bleed often, it’s important that you take the issue seriously. In some cases, it could simply be a sign of aggressive brushing or over-vigorous flossing, but bleeding gums could also be a sign of an underlying problem like gum disease. Either way, don’t ignore the issue — here’s what you should do if you have bleeding gums…

1.  Try to improve your oral hygiene habits

One of the most common causes of bleeding gums is a build-up of plaque along the gum line. If you don’t remove plaque regularly, it can harden into tartar, a substance that irritates the gums and causes gum disease over time. When the gums become irritated and/or inflamed as the result of tartar, they often bleed. To reduce the build-up of plaque and prevent discomfort and bleeding, it’s advisable that you practise proper oral hygiene every day. This means brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush, flossing daily and seeing your dentist for regular check-ups and cleans.

2.  Use the right oral hygiene products

Even if you are committed to healthy hygiene habits, you could be harming your gums if you don’t use the correct products when cleaning your teeth. Fortunately, it’s easy enough to get this right — simply use a soft-bristled toothbrush that won’t damage your enamel or your gum tissue. Although it’s possible to purchase medium and hard-bristled toothbrushes, these often do more harm than good as they can cause irritation and bruising, as well as bleeding. Soft-bristles do the job without causing irritation — just be sure to clean your teeth and gum line thoroughly by brushing all the surfaces of your teeth. Also, don’t forget to floss as this will help to remove plaque and prevent bleeding of the gums.

3.  Eat a balanced, healthy diet

The foods that you choose to eat play an important role in maintaining healthy gums. It is best to limit your consumption of refined carbohydrates and sugary foods, as these tend to contribute to the build-up of plaque, which then leads to gum disease. Try to stick to a diet that is rich in nutritious, unprocessed whole foods, but if you do enjoy the occasional treat, just be sure to rinse your mouth with water and brush your teeth afterwards to minimise damage to the teeth and gums.

4.  Consult with your dentist

Although improved oral hygiene habits and a healthy diet can go a long way in resolving bleeding gums, it’s a good idea to see your dentist if you struggle with the issue for an extended period of time. Your dentist will examine your teeth and gums thoroughly and look for signs of problems like gum disease. If they identify gum disease, they may recommend that you undergo a teeth cleaning or other treatment designed to prevent further damage to the gums and underlying bone. Early diagnosis and treatment are important when it comes to getting your oral health back on track, so don’t delay your dental visit if you are concerned about the condition of your gums.

How can we help?

At Mornington Peninsula Dental Clinic, we offer gum disease treatment and prevention services. If you have noticed bleeding gums, or any of the other possible symptoms of gum disease, such as swelling and tenderness, receding gums, pain when chewing, or persistent bad breath, we encourage you to come in and see us as soon as possible. In many cases, gum disease is painless, which is why it is a good idea to come in for regular dental check-ups every six months.

To find out more about our gum disease treatment and prevention services, please have a look here.

To find out more about the full range of treatments that we offer at Mornington Peninsula Dental Clinic, please have a look here.

To make an appointment, please get in touch here or give us a call on (03) 5975 5944.

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