If you experience gum bleeding every day, there is a chance that you have any of these conditions:
- Periodontitis – this is an advanced form or worse form of gum disease
- Leukemia – one of the most common cancers which involve your blood
- Vitamin deficiency – you don’t have enough vitamins in your body
- Lack of clotting cells – you don’t have enough platelets
Causes of Bleeding Gums
According to different studies, the primary cause of bleeding gums is dental care problems. The inflammation of the gums or commonly called as Gingivitis and periodontitis can make your gums more sensitive and prone to bleeding.
Plaques are the debris and bacteria that stay in your teeth. When plaque stays too long in your gum lines, it can develop a dental condition called Gingivitis. Brushing your teeth alone cannot remove the plaque inside your mouth. To avoid the presence of this debris and bacteria in your gum lines, you need to brush and floss your teeth properly.
Removing plaque must be done properly if you want to keep a healthy mouth and free your gums from bleeding. When you cannot remove the plaque, it can harden your tartar and increase the bleeding of your gums. The different symptoms of Gingivitis are:
- puffy gums
- bleeding gums
- soreness in the mouth and around the gums
Periodontitis is referred to as an advanced condition of Gingivitis. If you cannot treat your Gingivitis earlier and improve your dental care routine, it can lead to a more serious problem. Periodontal disease is a gum infection of the jawbone, gums, and other supportive tissues which are connecting your gums and teeth. If periodontitis continues without treatment, it can loosen your tooth and will eventually lead to falling out.
If you have deficiencies with Vitamin C and Vitamin K, it can make your gums bleed easily. When you have bleeding gums that are not caused by improper dental care, you need to check with your doctor and determine the possible cause. Your doctor may need to check your level of Vitamin C and K and recommend some vitamins that can relieve your bleeding gums. It is also important to establish a diet that is rich with both nutrients so you can guarantee that you are receiving enough vitamins for healthy gums.
Some foods that are rich with Vitamin C are:
- citrus fruits and juices
- bell peppers
Some foods that are rich with Vitamin K are:
- Swiss chard
- mustard greens
- olive and canola oil
Other Possible Causes of Bleeding Gums
Those people who are using dentures may also have a high risk of bleeding gums and catch cold. It happens if the dentures that you are wearing fits too tight. If you think this is your case, you need to talk to your dentist or orthodontist and confirm whether oral appliances such as dentures are causing your bleeding gums. An assessment from your dental care provider will give you better advice if you need new dentures or not.
Bleeding gums are also common during pregnancy. Because hormonal changes are happening when a woman is pregnant, the gums get more sensitive, thus making it vulnerable to bleeding.
Hemophilia and leukemia are other medical conditions that can increase the risk of bleeding gums. If you take blood-thinning medications regularly, you are expected to have bleeding gums. Those medications include aspirin, heparin, and warfarin.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Bleeding Gums
To determine the condition of your bleeding gums, your doctor will doctor may do the following:
- Review dental and medical history. You need to prepare your dental and medical history before you visit your doctor. He will ask for this information so he can assess your condition better.
- Examine your mouth, gums, teeth, and tongue. He will check whether there is a sign of plaque or inflammation.
- Other tests needed. If your doctor cannot find the real cause of bleeding gums, he may require additional tests to evaluate your condition. Since some other medical conditions can cause the gums to bleed, he may refer you to a gum specialist or a periodontist.
Treatment for Bleeding Gums
The first step to prevent and manage bleeding gums is to practice good dental hygiene. The following steps can bring a big help if you want to avoid or stop bleeding gums:
- A regular visit to your dentist. You need to practice a regular checkup with your dentist to make sure that you are keeping healthy gums. Have a professional cleaning twice each year. If your dentist can see your teeth and gums regularly, Gingivitis, which causes bleeding gums, can be diagnosed earlier, and you will have the proper treatment for it.
- Practice proper brushing and flossing. You are decreasing your risk of developing periodontal diseases if you can practice the right way to brush and floss your teeth.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash. Many people don’t consider mouthwash because they think brushing is enough to clean the mouth. But antibacterial mouthwash can kill the remaining bacteria that may have been left after brushing. So it is a great idea to add mouthwash with your dental hygiene.
- Use a soft toothbrush. Toothbrushes come with three different types, which are soft, medium, and hard. For people who have developed bleeding gums and want to minimize the condition, using a soft toothbrush is the most recommended.
- Consider an electric toothbrush. This product is better than your manual toothbrush, and an electric toothbrush can clean your gum lines better.
How to Prevent Bleeding Gums
When you find your gums bleeding while you brush or floss your teeth, you should not take it for granted. There are different reasons behind bleeding gums, and some of them may be a serious one.
You must identify the possible cause of bleeding gums to know the right treatment for your condition. As soon as you have determined the cause, choose the possible way/s to stop the bleeding:
- Establish and practice good oral hygiene. This step is the most basic way to reduce your risk of bleeding gums.
- Use hydrogen peroxide to rinse your mouth. This will not only help to stop gum bleeding. Hydrogen peroxide also removes plaque and promotes gum health.
- Minimize smoking until you can stop it. Smoking links to many health issues, and bleeding gums is one of them.
- Reduce the reasons for your stress. When you know that stress causes your bleeding gums, you need to minimize your stress level. Start with determining the reasons for your stress and stay away from them as much as possible.
- Increase your intake of Vitamin C, and Vitamin K. Vitamins C and K are important for our body, especially to our gums. To prevent or relieve bleeding gums, you need to increase your intake of Vitamin C and Vitamin K.
- Apply a cold compress. If bleeding gums were due to trauma or injury, apply a cold compress to your gum lines.
- Start eating fewer carbs. Studies showed that eating fewer carbs can boost your gums’ health and prevent gum disease.
- Use salted water to rinse your mouth. You can reduce bacteria and prevent gum bleeding with the help of salted water.
Risks of Having Bleeding Gums
Your risk of bleeding gums is higher due to the following factors:
- Age – your chances of developing bleeding gums increase because of age. Studies have shown that 50% of people who have bleedings gums are under the age of 30. While 70% are those people who have ages 65 years and older.
- Stress – stress is linked to many serious conditions in the human body. When a person is under stress, his body cannot fight infections, and that includes periodontal disease.
- Medications – some medications can cause your gums to bleed like blood thinners, anti-depressant, oral contraceptives, and some heart medications. Ask your doctor or dentist to determine whether your medication can affect your gums or not.
- Genetics – you may wonder why you still have bleeding gums though you are doing proper dental hygiene, and you don’t have any other medical conditions that may cause it. Your doctor may do a simple test to see if genetics has something to do with this condition.
- Smoking – if a person starts to smoke, he is increasing his risk with bleeding gums. Treatments for bleeding gums and other gum diseases are less effective if you are smoking regularly.
- Other risk factors – some factors that you may not know are poor oral hygiene, poor nutrition, and clenching or grinding your teeth.
When to Seek Medical Attention
You know it’s time to seek medical attention if your bleeding gums do not improve in 7 to 10 days. Your dentist may require a deep dental cleaning so she can remove the tartar and plaque that cause the bleeding and start the healing.
If your dentist doesn’t see that gum disease is causing your bleeding gums, she will recommend you to another specialist to determine if your condition is caused by vitamin deficiency.