As you brush your teeth, there may be signs of blood or redness around your gums. While it is tempting to ignore such signs, however, bleeding gums may be early warnings of gum diseases. Gum disease refers to the inflammation around the gum line that can escalate to a severe stage where the bone that surrounds and supports the teeth gets affected. There are three stages of gum disease- ranging from mild to most severe. They are gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Dentists in Ernakulam, Kerala are highly efficient and patient-friendly to keep your gums and teeth protected for a lifetime. It’s easy to get a dental treatment for bleeding gums, but there are certain baby step measures that may help you cut the need for a proper dental attention. Before you go to a dental clinic, keep the following things in mind.
Symptoms and signs of gum disease
It is important to be aware of the following symptoms because gum disease can be painless:
- Loose teeth
- Red, tender, swollen or bleeding gums
- Gums that move away or recede from the tooth
- Pus that is visible surrounding the gums and the teeth.
- Persistent bad taste or bad breath in the mouth.
The bleeding can be caused due to overly vigorous brushing or build-up of plaque. If some blood is noticed while flossing or brushing, it is important to see a dentist. However, there are certain steps that you can take to stop the bleeding from your gums.
- Improve your oral care routine: Following a good oral care routine can help stop bleeding gums. Brushing properly and using the right devices helps to improve the overall well-being of your mouth and prevent gum disease. Flossing and brushing regularly removes bacteria from the mouth that can inflame the gums. For example, using a firm-bristled or medium toothbrush can cause damage to the gums when pressure is applied while brushing. It is essential to use a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush lightly, using short strokes. This helps to keep the gums and teeth healthy.
- Keep a healthy diet: Improving your diet is an essential step towards stopping the bleeding of the gums and improve dental health. A diet comprising of whole foods, such as fruits and vegetables, provided your gums with the nutrients that it needs. Eating nutritionally deficient foods like soda, refined bread, sugary foods like candy deprives your gums of the nutrients that it needs to stay intact and healthy. It is important to eat a diet that is prevailed by vitamins, minerals, magnesium and calcium to improve the status of your gums.
- Quit smoking: Smoking is not only terrible for your mouth but also harmful for your overall health. It not only increases the risk of heart disease and certain cancers but also plays a huge role in the development of gum diseases. The toxins that are present in tobacco smoke prevent the gums from absorbing the nutrients that they need which can lead to inflammation. Quitting smoking despite being difficult is essential to maintain one’s oral as well as overall health.
- Relax: If your lifestyle is such that you are always busy against a deadline or are on the go, it may cause problems for you. The stress that you manage every day can cause your gums to bleed. Extreme stress levels can adversely affect your oral health in several ways. Stress increases the likelihood of inflammation that can make your gums prone to bleeding. Severe stress also decreases the functionality of the immune system which can cause hindrance with the body’s ability to fight with infections and heal quickly. A study published by the Journal of Periodontology found that women who are dealing with stress-related depression have a higher level of inflammation around the gums and increased level of plaque build-up. A stressed individual is also less likely to take care of himself or herself which means that she or he may eat a lot of junk food instead of a healthy meal and may not be inclined to take good care of his or her teeth and may skip brushing or flossing causing gum diseases. It is important to avoid taking too much work when your plate is already full and take some time off to relax when you are feeling overwhelmed.
- Don’t share: Bleeding gums and gum diseases are contagious. If a person has a lot of bacteria in his or her mouth, his or her partner is likely to develop gum problems easily. You must not share anything that comes into contact with the mouth of another person, from water glasses to toothbrushes. You must see your dentist for regular teeth cleanings and examinations to put an end to gum diseases and bleeding gums before it escalated to something serious. Make an appointment immediately if you haven’t seen your dentist for a long time and you notice bleeding gums while you brush. Get a proper diagnosis and making the appropriate changes that will go a long way in improving the health of your mouth.
- Rinse your mouth with hydrogen peroxide: Hydrogen peroxide is used as a disinfectant. But not only that it also helps to stop gum bleeding, remove plaque, and promote gum health. If you are suffering from bleeding gums then wash your mouth with hydrogen peroxide solution after brushing your teeth, however, be careful not to swallow the solution. In a study that was conducted of 99 subjects, some of the subjects were given a solution of hydrogen peroxide to rinse their mouth and to study its effect on inflammation and whitening of teeth. It was found that the group that used the solution has less inflammation of the gums than the control group.
- Increase the intake of Vitamin C: Maintaining a diet rich in vitamin C not only increases your immune system but also fights the inflammation of your gums. A diet deficient in vitamin C may cause more bleeding if you have gum diseases. Keeping a diet with a deficiency of Vitamin C can cause increased bleeding of the gums despite practising good oral hygiene. Foods that are rich in vitamin C are sweet potatoes, red peppers, and carrots. You can also take supplements for vitamin C. It is a powerful antioxidant that strengthens the connective tissue and protects the lining of the gums. You should take the recommended amount of vitamin C daily.
- Increase the intake of vitamin K: Now, you must be wondering why Vitamin K has been given a special mention. This is because intake of Vitamin K is one of the few measures that you can take specifically to stop bleeding gums. Eating a diet rich in Vitamin K or taking supplements can help to alleviate bleeding gums. Vitamin K helps in blood clots. Its deficiency can cause easy bleeding. You should eat foods like kale, mustard green, spinach, and collard green.
- Applying a cold compress: Applying a cold compress to the gums can help to reduce inflammation and restrict the blood flow to terminate the bleeding. Gums can bleed also due to injury to the gum tissue or trauma. Applying a cold cloth or an ice pack several times to your gums can help with the bleeding.
- Rinse your mouth with saltwater: inflammation and bacteria in the mouth can cause gum disease which can be prevented by rinsing your mouth with a saltwater solution.
However, it’s important that you visit your dentist if the bleeding doesn’t stop after following any of the steps in 7 to 10 days. You can visit a dentist anytime to solve your dental problems. The above points are just some precautions that one can take in their daily lives. But that does not mean one shouldn’t go to a dentist if the need arises. Hope you found this article useful. Feel free to share your opinion and experience with us.