Charleston Dentist explains one of the most common oral health problems – your gums are puffy and/or bleed when you brush or floss
It happens to many of us. We wake up in the morning, brush our teeth with our eyes half open and then we notice it. A little bit of blood on the toothbrush. We rinse the toothbrush and try again, but it’s still there. It may be so common that we don’t really think anything of it. Maybe we notice that our gums feel a little bit tender or are puffy and swollen.
When these things happen, it’s a sign that you could have gum disease, also called periodontal disease. While gum disease is common, you should still take it seriously. Dr. Andrew Greenberg, of Mouth Carolina Dentistry in Charleston, SC, has been helping patients confirm and treat gum disease for many years. He says the first step to treating gum disease is to understand it.
Your mouth is made up of more than just gums and teeth; it’s also full of bacteria, soft tissue, food particles, and mucus. To keep plaque and bacteria from harming your teeth and gums, the bacteria need to be removed constantly. That’s why it’s so important to take your time brushing and flossing thoroughly. If the plaque isn’t removed, it can begin to harden and become tartar.
There are several forms of gum disease. Gingivitis is the mildest form. It’s identified by red, tender, swollen, or bleeding gums. While it can cause you some discomfort, it can be treated with proper dental care.
On the other hand, if gingivitis goes undetected it can progress into periodontitis, a more severe form of the disease. With periodontitis, the gums begin to pull away from the teeth leaving pockets between the tooth and gums were bacteria continue to grow and cause infection of the gums. This infection breaks down the gums and bone, which can lead to your teeth becoming loose and eventually falling out. Periodontitis can be treated with deep cleaning, medication, or surgery.
So if you notice swelling of your gums or bleeding when you brush, call the office of Mouth Carolina Dentistry to schedule an appointment with Dr. Greenberg. He will examine your gums and determine if you do have gum disease. If you do, he’ll put you on a treatment plan to get you back to a healthy mouth.Back to Dental Library Page