Have you ever seen blood in the sink after brushing your teeth and said something like, “It’s no big deal; it’s just my sensitive gums”? Before you write it off as meaningless, keep in mind that your body might be trying to tell you something. Since your gums are actually what hold your teeth in your head, isn’t it worth learning a little more?
YOUR MOUTH IS GIVING YOU A WARNING
An estimated 90 percent of all Americans experience bleeding gums at some point in their lives. Just because it’s common doesn’t remove the importance of taking heed. Bleeding gums are a sign of inflammation that may signal bigger problems. You might not be brushing correctly; perhaps you don’t floss enough. Whatever the cause, it is important to visit a dentist such as Silver Lake Family Dental to learn more and to try to prevent further damage.
UNTREATED INFLAMMATION CAN BE A SLIPPERY SLOPE
Bleeding gums can often signal the beginning stage of gum disease known as gingivitis. Although it cannot be reversed, good hygiene and regular visits to Silver Lake Family Dental or another provider can keep it in check. If untreated, gingivitis can turn to a much more serious condition called periodontitis, to gum recession and even to tooth loss.
DENTISTS ARE BEST AT DIAGNOSIS
While you may suspect that you have gingivitis or even periodontitis or worse, your dentist is the best person to give you a definitive answer. The doctor or hygienist will examine your mouth with a hand-held periodontal probe to look closely at your gums and the distances between your teeth. They will look for excessive bleeding as well as areas where the gum tissue is detached from the teeth.
MANY FACTORS AFFECT GUM HEALTH
Regular, effective brushing and flossing are two of the best ways to protect and prolong the life of your gums, but other things come into play as well. The higher hormone levels in birth control pills and during pregnancy can increase gum bleeding. If your immune system is compromised due to disease or medications or if you have diabetes, you are more prone to gum issues. While certain medications can increase bleeding, smoking actually constricts blood vessels and masks the signs of disease.
Gum bleeding is not normal. Instead of ignoring it, call the caring professionals at Silver Lake Family Dental. We will give your teeth and gums expert care in a convenient and friendly environment.