Gingivitis: Symptoms & Potential Causes
Published on February 26th, 2018
FYI: Seventy-five percent of Americans will experience gum disease at some point in their life, according to Crest. But there’s no need to panic and run to our Chesterfield dentist just yet. While gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums, is very common, it can range from mild to moderate to severe. Depending on the seriousness of your gingivitis, your problems may go away all on their own.
Gingivitis is typically a result of plaque build-up on or between your teeth. Plaque makes a toxin that irritates the surrounding gum. The gums then respond by becoming red, puffy, and easily susceptible to bleeding. It’s important to take care of your gingivitis quickly because, while gingivitis is easily reversed, it can progress to a more serious gum disease. Education is the best prevention, so Chesterfield Family Dentist created this guide to help you spot and understand the symptoms and potential causes of gingivitis.
How Do I Know If I Have Gingivitis?
As stated earlier, you may notice that your gums have become red, puffy, or that they bleed easily. The bleeding may occur solely from brushing or flossing. While sometimes gingivitis doesn’t cause any pain, it’s possible that your gums may become achy and sore. Look out for loose teeth, constant bad breath, or tooth sensitivity, as these can all be signs that you have gingivitis.
We know that gingivitis is caused by the excessive buildup of plaque on your teeth. This can be made worse by a number of conditions. Here are a few potential causes:
Poor Oral Hygiene: failing to brush and floss regularly allows plaque to build up and negatively affect your gums.
Smoking and Tobacco Use: People who use tobacco or smoke are at a much higher risk of developing gum disease.
Bad Nutrition: lack of adequate nutrition robs your body of necessary nutrients that allow it to more easily fight off infection.
Stress: Constant or extreme stress weakens your body’s immune system. This makes it harder to prevent gum disease.
Medications: some medications may affect your oral health. Keep your dentist in the loop about any medications you take.
If you’re worried you may be showing signs of gingivitis, call our Chesterfield dentist today!