Are you bleeding every time you brush?
ok maybe not every time , but few times a week?
do you avoid flossing your teeth because every time it causes tenderness and bleeding of your gums?
Well here is what usually is the reason – needs to be confirmed with your dentist , on an actual dental examination , no google cannot fully diagnose (yet!) – inflammation.
very first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, which is common these days but does not mean it can be ignored, as I said, it is the first stage, if not acknowledge and treated properly it will cause tartar build up, loss of bone and eventually teeth.
As you can imagine bone and gum are the very foundation of your teeth , if you lose the gum or bone around the tooth, tooth will get loose and fall out . Scary! I know!
Let’s start from the beginning :
Your mouth contains Oral Microbiome , which are the “healthy bugs” they promote good health in you mouth. These Microbiome need to thrive and not to be killed for you to have a healthy mouth and body.
How Oral health relates to your overall health you ask? READ HERE.
you have 1000 different species of bacteria in your mouth that link to weight , mental health and even dementia. In order for you to have a healthy body and function these bacteria need to exist.
How does it all start?
Periodontium is the part of you mouth that forms the supporting structure around the teeth such as bone and gum, they are the foundation of your teeth.
if the Periodontium gets ill soon you can lose the tooth too as it won’t have anything to hold it anymore.
Gingivitis is inflammation of the gingiva (gum) around the tooth which basically is your body responding to overgrowth of bad bacteria in the mouth. Gingivitis can cause more severe conditions if left untreated.
Periodontitis is when gingivitis is left untreated for so long that bone loss and resorption happens as a result, unlike gingivitis that can be reversed Periodontitis is irreversible.
We have a lot of bacteria in our mouth at all times.
Disgusting ? you say? well , not really.
even the healthiest of mouths still carry millions of bacteria. As long as the balance between the harmful and healthy bacteria is in balance your gum will stay healthy. When the harmful bacteria increases in your mouth , there is a thin layer of film forming on the teeth , this build up is called plaque.
While thin amount of plaque is safe but when it is left for too long , it thicken and changes it’s consistency then it is harmful for your gum , as it will cause gum inflammation, redness and bleeding.
While you can remove the cause of the inflammation – the build up – as long as the issue is reversible. If the gingivitis turn into a chronic disease it will be too late to turn back your gums into healthy ones.
once the gingivitis progress into Preiodontitis you will bone can be loss and eventually loss of teeth.
Two reasons you can be suffering from Gingivitis
Poor oral hygiene causing an increase in you oral bad bacteria.
Bad bacteria overtaking the good ones. This can happen by using mouthwashes that kill both type bacteria , GOOD AND BAD , or having an over-sugary diet.
Symptoms you experience if you are suffering from Gingivitis
- Swollen gums
- Red or even purple gums
- bad breath
- Bleeding gums when you brush
- tender gums
Factors that increase the risks of developing Gingivitis
- Bad Oral Hygiene (yes we know we have mentioned this billions of times in this blog post, but this is important people!)
- Mouth breathing
- Aggressive brushing (that can cause Gum recession)
- Sleep Apnoea
- Dental work that was poorly done or is chipped of and now is hard to keep clean
- Autoimmune disorder
- Some prescription medications (like immunosuppressant, Antihistamine, Calcium channel blockers, Blood pressure medication)
Now , How to fix this?
First thing you need to know is gingivitis is reversible, what is irreversible is when gingivitis turns into periodontitis. So let’s see what oral habits we need to change.