ORANGE CITY AND DELTONA, FL
Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing your teeth can be alarming. There are multiple reasons why your gums may bleed, but the most common reason is gum disease. Everyone gets tartar buildup, which only can be removed with professional dental cleanings. When your gums have tartar buildup that isn’t removed, it causes gum inflammation, which in turn will lead to bleeding. Terry Soule, DDS, a dental office in Orange City that treats gum disease, wants you to know what you can do about your bleeding gums.
Improve Your Oral Hygiene
As plaque builds up along your gum line and is not removed by regular brushing and flossing, it can harden into tartar, which is not easily removed with a toothbrush. If left untreated, the tartar can irritate your gums and eventually lead to gingivitis, which is an early stage of gum disease. To reduce the amount of tartar buildup on your teeth, it is important that you stick to a daily oral care routine. Brush your teeth a minimum of twice per day for at least two minutes with fluoridated toothpaste. Also, make sure to floss and brush your tongue as well. Even though your gums may bleed or feel sensitive, it is important to floss still and remove any food debris and plaque from in between your teeth.
Examine Your Oral Care Tools
When you have a well-established oral hygiene regimen, the next thing is to check the oral care tools you use. First, if your toothbrush has medium or hard bristles, it is recommended by most dentists to replace the toothbrush for one that has soft bristles. By swapping out your toothbrush, you reduce the possibility of the bristles rubbing the gums too hard while brushing. If it is not your toothbrush, try to ease up on the pressure when brushing. Brushing harder does not mean brushing cleaner. Be gentle with your teeth and gums, don’t scrub your teeth like you’re cleaning the tile in your bathroom.
Understand Your Medications
Sometimes over-the-counter pain relievers or prescription blood thinners may cause gums to bleed. There may also be other prescriptions you are taking that result in this side effect. Therefore, when you have bleeding gums, talk to your dentist about the prescription medication you are taking. With a little research, it can quickly be noted if the medication is causing the gums to bleed as a side effect.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating healthy helps more than just your teeth. It is great for your waistline too. Eating a nutritious diet filled with fruits and vegetables keeps your body and teeth healthy. It is best to avoid candy, chips, soda, and other items that are filled with carbohydrates or sugar. The sugar will stick to your teeth, fueling the cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth. Try to skip the snacky foods and instead reach for healthy choices like apples, carrots, and celery. The raw fruits and vegetables help remove other debris and plaque on your teeth.
Bleeding gums is usually a sign of gum disease, which affects nearly half of adults in the United States. When you see signs of your gums bleeding, do not panic. Follow the above directions for a few days and see if there are any changes. If your gums are still bleeding despite your efforts of excellent oral care, see your dentist for a gum disease evaluation. Otherwise, gum disease only worsens in time. Feel free to call Dr. Terry Soule, DDS, at (386) 775-1552 to schedule an appointment.