Bleeding gums are a common early indicator of periodontal disease. If you notice that your gums bleed when brushing, feel tender or appear red and irritated it is important to schedule a visit with Dr. Ziemba or Dr. Evans to avoid the development of more complex concerns.
Gum disease remains a leading cause of tooth loss among adults today, primarily due to a lack of dental care and early intervention. When caught early, gum disease is typically treatable and we can make personalized recommendations for at home oral hygiene to prevent a recurrence.
Knowing the common risk factors is important and can help you take control of your oral and overall health for long term improvements.
Age – Studies indicate that older people have the highest rates of periodontal disease. Smoking/tobacco use – Tobacco use is linked with many serious illnesses, such as cancer, lung disease and heart disease, as well as numerous other health problems. Tobacco users also are at increased risk for periodontal disease. Genetics – Research has indicated that some people may be genetically susceptible to gum disease. Despite aggressive oral care habits, these people may be more likely to develop periodontal disease. Stress – Research demonstrates that stress can make it more difficult for the body to fight off infection, including periodontal disease. Medications – Some drugs, such as oral contraceptives, antidepressants and certain heart medicines, can affect your oral health. You should inform your dental care provider of all medicines you are taking. Clenching or grinding of teeth – Can put excess force on the supporting tissues of the teeth and could speed up the rate at which these periodontal tissues are destroyed. Systemic diseases – Interfere with the body’s inflammatory system and may worsen the condition of the gums. These include cardiovascular disease, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. Poor nutrition and obesity – A diet low in important nutrients can compromise the body’s immune system and make it harder for the body to fight off infection. Because periodontal disease begins as an infection, poor nutrition can worsen the condition of your gums.
Treating Bleeding Gums
The most important aspect of your treatment for gum disease is to thoroughly examine your teeth and gums to determine the stage and assess any possible damage. Dr. Evans or Dr. Ziemba will recommend the most appropriate option for restoring healthy gums and discuss how to maintain them between visits.
Scaling and root planing: this is an intense dental cleaning that removes plaque and tartar that has hardened along the gum line. For patients with early stage gingivitis, this is often sufficient to reduce symptoms and allow the gums to heal.
Laser dentistry: uses a soft tissue laser, Dr. Evans or Dr. Ziemba can accurately and comfortably remove affected gum tissue and stimulate the natural healing process.
Gum surgery: in very advanced or complex cases of periodontitis, oral surgery may be necessary to restore dental health. We will coordinate your care with a local specialist.