What are the causes of bleeding gums?

How do you treat bleeding gums?

Do your gums bleed when you brush your teeth?

At Smil, our clinicians understand how dental health can play a part in your overall well-being. Bleeding gums can be an alarming sign that something isn’t right. We believe in providing our patients with the knowledge they need to maintain a healthy smile for life.

Let us delve into what causes bleeding gums. In this article, we’ll be taking a look into how to prevent bleeding gums and when to schedule an appointment at our Chatham dental practice.

What are the causes of bleeding gums?

Bleeding gums can have various underlying causes, ranging from minor irritations to more serious oral health issues. Some common factors that contribute to bleeding gums include:


The most common cause of bleeding gums is gingivitis, a form of gum disease. When plaque and tartar build up along the gum line, bacteria can irritate the gums, leading to inflammation and bleeding.

Poor oral hygiene

Inadequate oral hygiene can lead to the accumulation of plaque and bacteria, promoting gum disease and bleeding gums.

Brushing too hard

While regular brushing is essential for oral health, brushing too vigorously can damage the delicate gum tissue and cause it to bleed.

Hormonal changes

Hormonal changes during pregnancy or certain stages of a menstrual cycle can make gums more sensitive and prone to bleeding.

What is the link between bleeding gums and gum disease?

Bleeding gums are closely linked to gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. Gingivitis, the initial stage of gum disease, is characterised by inflammation and bleeding of the gums. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress into periodontitis. 

Periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease that can lead to irreversible damage to the gums and supporting bone structure. 

The bacteria in plaque irritate the gums, causing inflammation. Over time, this inflammation can break down the gum tissue and bone, creating pockets around the teeth where more plaque and bacteria can accumulate. As the disease progresses, teeth may become loose, causing severe tooth loss in some cases.

When do I need to visit a dentist?

By visiting our clinicians for regular check-ups and hygiene appointments, you increase the chances of catching gum disease in its early stages. You should aim to visit our practice twice a year, or every six months. Early detection allows for more straightforward and less invasive treatments, preventing the condition from progressing. 

Our dental hygienists help our patients prevent bleeding gums and other common oral health issues, such as plaque buildup. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should schedule an appointment at our dental practice in Chatham:

*Bleeding gums
*Red or swollen gums
*Persistent bad breath
*Receding gums
*Tooth sensitivity
*Loose teeth

To learn more about how our dental hygienists can help you maintain a healthy smile, please click here.

How to prevent bleeding gums

Good oral hygiene

The easiest way to prevent bleeding gums is to maintain good oral hygiene at home. You should brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily to remove plaque and bacteria from the gum line. Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid damaging the gums while brushing. Adults should use toothpaste containing at least 1,350 ppm fluoride, a crucial ingredient that strengthens teeth and prevents decay.

You should wait at least 30 mins after eating to brush your teeth. Brushing your teeth straight after eating can damage your enamel.

Regular check-ups

Visiting our Chatham dental practice for regular check-ups and professional cleanings can help prevent bleeding gums and detect oral health issues early on. 

Lifestyle changes

There are also lifestyle changes you can make to try and prevent bleeding gums. Consuming a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals will help to support healthy gum tissue. Smoking can contribute to gum disease and hinder the healing process. Our clinicians would always recommend quitting smoking for better oral health. You should also try your best to avoid stress. High stress levels can weaken the immune system, making it harder for your body to fight off infections like gum disease.

How do you treat bleeding gums?

If you are experiencing bleeding gums or other signs of gum disease, our skilled clinicians can provide the necessary care and treatment. During your visit to our practice, we will conduct a thorough dental examination and develop a personalised treatment plan based on your specific needs.

Treatment options for bleeding gums may include:

Professional dental cleaning. Our dental hygienists will perform a thorough cleaning to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth and gums. In most cases, our dentists will recommend you book an appointment with our hygienists after noticing cause for concern. 

Scaling and root planing. For more advanced gum disease, we may recommend a deep cleaning procedure to remove plaque and tartar from below the gum line and smooth the tooth roots to promote gum reattachment. A scale 

Antibiotics. In cases of severe infection, antibiotics may be prescribed.

Oral care recommendations. We will provide guidance on improving your oral hygiene routine and making lifestyle changes to support gum health.

Bleeding gums can be a warning sign of gum disease, a condition that requires early intervention to prevent further complications. We strive to provide the best possible care. Visiting our dentists regularly is a vital step in keeping your gums healthy.

Experiencing bleeding gums?

If you are experiencing bleeding gums or have any concerns about your oral health, please do not hesitate to book an appointment at our Chatham dental practice. Our skilled clinicians will work with you to discuss what might be causing your bleeding gums and how we can help you treat them. Call our friendly team today on 01634 756 536 to find out more.

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Smil, Unit 69-70, Dockside Outlet Shopping Centre, Maritime Way, St Mary's Island, Chatham, ME4 3ED

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