Bleeding gums occurs most commonly in gum disease, but can also occur due to many other health problems. Sometimes, bleeding of gums results from brushing teeth too vigorously or wearing ill fitting dentures. But frequent bleeding occurs in conditions like
Gingivitis (inflammation of gums)
Periodontitis (an advanced form of gum disease)
Thrombocytopenia (platelet deficiency)
Though they are a tiny part of our body, gums play a very important role. They act as safe guards for our teeth and thus protect them from bacteria. Without healthy gums bacteria can pass beneath the teeth, thus damaging tissues. With time, the tissues become too damaged to hold teeth, leading to loose teeth that can even fall out.
What Causes Bleeding Gums
Gingivitis (Gum Disease)
Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums, usually caused by a bacterial infection.
If we don’t comply with daily oral hygiene routine i.e. flossing and brushing regularly, bacteria gets build up in the groove between teeth and gums as plaque(white or yellowish marks). Further they cause inflammation of gums called gingivitis. Hence, Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease with symptoms like bleeding gums, red gums, sensitive gums and bad breath. Gingivitis can turn into periodontitis if oral hygiene measures are not taken at appropriate time.
Periodontitis, also known as gum disease and pyorrhea. It involves progressive loss of the alveolar bone, and can further lead to the loosening and subsequent loss of teeth,if left untreated.
Symptoms may include:
Redness or bleeding of gums while brushing
Deep pockets between the teeth and the gums
Loose teeth, in the later stages
Hormonal changes in pregnancy affect the whole body including gums. Hormonal changes can cause “pregnancy gingivitis” in which gums get swollen, sensitive and can cause bleeding while brushing.
Certain medications also affect gums like Phenytoin, Cyclosporin etc.
Therefore, if you notice any signs and symptoms of gum disease, that’s the time for you to make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible because sooner is always better.