If you have noticed a bit of blood after brushing and flossing your teeth it may not seem like anything serious, but in truth bleeding gums can be an early sign of gum disease. There are a few possible causes for bleeding gums and it is important to know what they are and what to do to prevent further problems.
Oral Hygiene Practices
Inadequate oral hygiene is the most common cause of bleeding gums. If your gums are red and swollen, chances are you have been neglecting oral hygiene practices. Do you only brush once a day or even less often, only floss occasionally, or not at all? Poor oral hygiene can result in unhealthy gums and gum disease. Plaque buildup irritates your gums and over time can cause gum disease and tooth decay.
Practicing good oral hygiene, brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily along with regular dental exams and professional cleaning will keep your gums healthy. Electric toothbrushes with rotating headed can make daily brushing more appealing and helps to promote blood flow to the gums to prevent infections. Water picks or floss picks can be used as an alternative to traditional flossing. Rinsing with an antibacterial mouthwash after brushing and flossing may boost the health of your gums.
Hereditary Gum Disease
It is not uncommon for gum disease to run in families, if members of your family have had problems with gum disease it is important to tell your oral hygienist and dentist so they can help you develop an oral health routine to keep your mouth and gums healthy. If you don’t know about the dental health of your family, your dentist may suggest DNA testing to detect if you may be susceptible to strains of gum disease. Practicing proper brushing methods, daily flossing, and using an antibacterial mouthwash will help to protect your teeth and gums.
Gingivitis during Pregnancy
Pregnancy hormones make pregnant women more vulnerable to the formation of gingivitis even when they practice a good oral hygiene routine. By the second trimester, nearly half of all pregnant women in North America will experience gum issues.
Make an appointment early in your pregnancy and ask your dentist for advice for proper dental care during pregnancy. Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day and rinse your mouth with a non-alcoholic antibacterial mouthwash after brushing. Following exceptional oral hygiene practices will help keep your gums healthy during pregnancy.
Keep your mouth healthy by eating a healthy diet. Fruits, vegetables, and dairy products are essential foods to keep your mouth in tip top conditions. Avoiding foods that are acidic or high in sugar contribute to tooth decay and poor gum health and add damaging bacteria to your mouth.
Eating anti-inflammatory foods such as fish helps to keep the mouth healthy and helps to prevent swollen gums. Crunchy vegetables help to keep teeth cleaner and remove damaging bacteria from the surface of the teeth and gum line. Dairy products such as cheese help to keep the mouth healthy too. Ask your dentist what foods help to prevent gum disease.
Tips to Help Keep your Gum Healthy
- use a soft bristle toothbrush
- use an ADA approved antibacterial mouthwash
- take a daily multi-vitamin or eat a healthy diet
- floss daily
- don’t use tobacco products
- avoid medications that thin your blood unless recommended by your doctor
Call 905.731.1871 today to schedule an appointment with your dentist at Dentistry For You today.