Many people have experienced bleeding gums when brushing their teeth or especially when flossing. If you’ve ever experienced this – the toothbrush turning pink, or flecks of red showing up in the sink when you spit – your first reaction may have been one of alarm. Later, you might have been told by someone that “that’s just normal” or “it happens to lots of people, so don’t worry about it.”
While it is true that many people do experience bleeding gums and that it is not uncommon at all, this doesn’t mean that it is nothing to worry about. In actual fact, healthy gums should never bleed, even when brushed vigorously. Flossing should likewise not cause bleeding gums, providing again that the gums are healthy, and that excessive force is not used to insert the floss between the teeth. (A gentle back and forth sawing motion with the floss is best, thus avoiding sudden forceful impact onto the gums between the teeth.)
The reason why bleeding gums are so common is because gingivitis, the earliest stage of periodontal disease, is also extremely common. Gingivitis simply means “inflammation of the gum tissue.” It is nearly always caused by the bacteria present in layers of plaque which accumulate on the teeth.
Gingivitis is reversible through good oral hygiene and dental care. Action must be taken to reverse the deterioration of the gums and restore them to health. Thus worse complications can be avoided.
If you have experienced bleeding gums, it is likely you have some degree of gingivitis affecting at least some of your gums. Call us at 612-332-1255 and make an appointment at Minneapolis Dental to find out exactly where you stand and what can be done to improve the health of your gums and bring you a healthy, confident, beautiful smile.