Bleeding gums are not normal. For many patients bleeding gums are a sign of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that infects the gums and when left untreated can spread to the bloodstream. If your gums bleed when brushing or flossing, it is important to have your dentist look at your gums. Contact Dr. David Weinstock as soon as possible at his Philadelphia, PA dentist office.
The Importance of Gum Health
Healthy gums are very good to maintaining a healthy smile. Healthy gums help keep teeth stable and in proper alignment. They are the structure that holds teeth in place. Gums that have an infection can recede and pull away from teeth. This leads to tooth decay, tooth loss and even teeth shifting. The main cause of gum recession is gum disease.
Patients with advanced stages of gum disease are also at a higher risk of developing diseases. Inflammation, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes are all linked to gum disease. The disease progresses very quickly and can cause permanent damage if left untreated.
The progression of periodontal disease is the major cause of tooth loss in adults. It is an inflammatory disease that results in the destruction of tooth supporting bone. The cause of gum inflammation is mainly by the build up of bacterial plaque below the gum line. Gum disease can be painful and cause chronic halitosis.
If you do not have a dentist remove it, bacteria and toxins cause the gums to become inflamed and sore. The tooth supporting bone responds to this inflammation by simply melting away. Left untreated, the resulting bone loss will leave behind pockets of gum around the affected teeth. These pockets will hold still more plaque, bacteria, and tartar in an area where the patient cannot reach with a toothbrush or floss. Periodontal disease is often painless in its early and moderate stages. However, it is a progressive disease that will get worse without treatment.
Risk Factors Of Periodontal Disease
- Lifestyle and dietary habits
- Tobacco use
- Medical conditions
- Certain medications
Stages of Gum Disease
Gum disease is a progressive condition. There are three main phases of the disease. We suggest that you have your dentist treat your gum disease in the earliest stages. Continue reading to learn more about the stages of gum disease.
- Gingivitis: Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. During this stage, patients may notice bleeding, swelling, or tenderness in the gums. When diagnosed with gingivitis, a deep cleaning may be all they need to heal their gums. It is important to seek treatment as early as possible because if caught in the earliest stage the infection is reversible.
- Periodontitis: As plaque continues to form around the tooth, deep pockets begin developing in the gums where bacteria will breed. This may cause teeth to become loose, and gum recession may form. At this point damage is irreversible, however, treatment is important to prevent the disease from progressing.
- Advanced Periodontists: If left untreated, periodontists will begin to cause the gum line to recede. It can also begin to deteriorate the surrounding bone structure. Without substantial bone structure, teeth may shift or fall out and the jawline may begin to recede. Once patients reach the final stage of periodontitis they also risk potential tooth loss.
Treatment is crucial for each stage of gum disease, however, the earlier we begin treatment the better we can prevent permanent damage. Scheduling regular dental cleanings and examinations can help aid in catching any issues early so we are able to treat them before they can more cause serious issues.
Treatment for Bleeding Gums
To stop bleeding gums, Dr. Weinstock must address the cause of the problem. Our Philadelphia, PA dentist office provides scaling and root planing for the treatment of periodontal disease. Scaling and root planing cleanse the gums and teeth of infection so that they can properly heal.
Dr. Weinstock will polish the tooth surface and thoroughly clean the roots and the surrounding tissues. This treatment will establish the healthy environment necessary for healing. For many patients, scaling and root planing is the only procedure necessary to restore health and function to your gums. However, in more advanced cases additional treatments may be necessary to eliminate periodontal pockets through surgical intervention. For your comfort, we will use a local anesthetic during the procedure.
If you have any questions about scaling and root planning, please ask the doctor or hygienist. Our staff is always happy to answer any questions you may have.
Bleeding Gums FAQs
Do you have further questions about bleeding gums and how they may affect your smile? Continue reading to find answers to frequently asked questions in our office.
What causes bleeding gums?
There are many causes of bleeding gums including plaque buildup, heart disease, diabetes, brushing too hard, and gingivitis. It can also signify a vitamin deficiency. Typically this is a sign of a vitamin C and vitamin K deficiency. Another cause of bleeding gums in women may be pregnancy or hormonal changes.
Can a nutrient deficiency cause bleeding gums?
A vitamin deficiency can be the cause of your issue of bleeding or sensitive gums. Having low levels of vitamin c is the main vitamin that contributes to this. Vitamin K also contributes to gum bleeding. Taking external supplements of these, or eating foods high in vitamins may help if you are experiencing bleeding gums.
What can it mean if my gums are bleeding?
Bleeding gums are often a direct result of built-up plaque in the gums. Plaque is full of germs and unhealthy bacteria that attack your healthy soft tissue in the gums. When the gums have plaque in them, he bacteria will attack them causing inflammation. This is what lead to bleeding. Bleeding is especially common when brushing and flossing.
Is it okay for my gums to bleed while flossing?
No, if your gums are bleeding while you are flossing, then you are not properly caring for your oral health. The cause of bleeding gums while flossing or brushing is by a built-up plaque around the gums. This is from not taking care for your teeth and gums. If your gums are bleeding it means they defending themselves from outside germs.
Schedule a Dental Exam with our Dentist in Philadelphia, PA
Dr. Weinstock provides state of the art periodontal therapy to patients in the Philadelphia, PA region. If your gums are bleeding, swollen, or you notice any changes in the fit of your bite or oral appliance, contact our Philadelphia PA dentist office or schedule a consultation online.