If you think a little bleeding now and then when you brush or floss your teeth is normal, think again. Simply put–healthy gums don’t bleed.
Most of the time, bleeding gums are the result of inadequate plaque removal due to infrequent or poor brushing habits. Plaque contains germs and will attack the healthy tissue around your teeth. Over time, this causes redness and inflammation which may bleed while brushing and flossing. This is called Gingivitis, and it is the first stage of gum disease.
Gingivitis is a persistent condition caused by the continuing effects of plaque and tartar buildup. Almost everyone will have some degree of gingivitis at some point in their lives, but consistent dental attention can turn it around. Plaque can be easily removed with a proper brushing and flossing routine, but tartar requires a trip to the dentist. At this point, Gingivitis has advanced into a more serious condition called Periodontitis.
While gingivitis is confined to the gums, periodontal disease spreads into the tissues and bones that support your teeth. Periodontitis can lead to tooth loss and may even affect your overall health.
Bleeding Gums Can Affect Your Overall Health
A growing body of research finds that bacteria and inflammation in your mouth can be related to other problems, including:
- heart disease
- rheumatoid arthritis
Even more reasons why you should not ignore your bleeding gums!
You May be at Risk
As we’ve covered, almost everyone will have some degree of gingivitis sometime in their lives. There are certain factors that will increase your probability:
- Age – The incidence of gum disease increases with age.
- Stress – Research indicates that stress can make it more difficult for your body to fight off infection, including periodontal diseases.
- Medications – Some prescription medicines can increase your risk of gum disease.
- Genetics – Some of us are just predisposed to get gum disease. If members of your family have a history of gum problems, you can ask your dentist for a simple genetic test to determine your risk.
Take Preventative Action
Osborne Family Dental is a friendly, modern private practice located in North Canton, Ohio since 2005. Dr. Robert Osborne and his experienced staff emphasize regular preventative care and thorough screenings to detect your dental problems early when they are most easily treated. We recommend return visits on a schedule based upon your individual needs and as your dental health requires.