Bleeding Gums - Why Does It Happen?

Watch Dental Video about Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums are the result of an inflammatory disease of the gums.

The physician calls this gingivitis, healthy gums don’t bleed, even in cases of an irritation, such as brushing the teeth. They fit tightly around the teeth, have a light pink color and, when observed at close range, show a fine stippling, like an orange. Bleeding gums are always a sign of gum disease. Oftentimes, you don’t notice the bleeding directly – only when you brush your teeth or when lightly probed, there is a noticeable loss of blood. Bleeding gums in themselves are a symptom and not a disease. The disease associated with bleeding gums is an inflammation of the gums, so-called gingivitis – more on that in the video titled "fixed gums".

Inflammatory Disease of the Gums

Inflammatory Disease of the Gums

The most frequent cause of gingivitis is plaque. So plaque not only causes caries, but also inflammation of the gums – more on that in the video "Plaque". Although plaque-induced gingivitis may be influenced by various factors such as medications, or hormonal changes (e.g., pregnancy, taking the pill, puberty), plaque is always the trigger that gets the ball rolling.

If the inflammation of the gums is not treated or treated incorrectly, then the inflammation may turn into a chronic inflammation of the periodontal apparatus, or so-called periodontitis – more on that in the video "Periodontitis Treatment". Other causes of gingivitis are, e.g., fungal diseases, congenital – i.e., genetic – diseases, irritations due to foreign objects, such as protruding crown margins or filling edges.

The determination of the cause is the first step in treatment. In most cases, professional oral hygiene, the removal of the causes, and educating the patient are sufficient to treat gingivitis. Periodontitis cannot be treated with oral hygiene; treatment can only be accomplished through a periodontal treatment.

This post is also available in: German

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