Do you find a drop or two of blood on your sink when you brush or floss your teeth? Most people dismiss this as a normal part of their oral health routine, especially if it happens regularly.
However, it shouldn’t be the case. If it happens to you a lot, you should try to figure out how to stop bleeding gums right away.
Why? Bleeding gums typically means two things.
One, it could be that you’re brushing your teeth too vigorously or too harshly. This can mean tissue damage and you could be hurting yourself in the process.
Two, it could be an early symptom of a gum disease. You should try to address this right away if you want to maintain your good oral health.
What should you do to get rid of bleeding gums? Let this comprehensive guide help you out.
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Reasons Why Your Gums Bleed
Before we discuss the different things on how to stop bleeding gums, you should first learn why your gums bleed. This will help you understand your situation better and even realize the gravity of it.
It could help convince you to take all the available measures to fix this problem and improve your oral health in general.
So what are the causes of this condition? Here are a few of the most common that could also be to blame for your case:
1. You’re Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard
Believe it or not, it’s entirely possible for you to brush your teeth too hard. Some people think that their teeth can take harsh brushing since it’s made of tough material but it’s not really the case.
This often results in damaged tooth enamel as well as the bruising and bleeding of the gums.
Since your gums are made of softer tissue, it’s way easier to damage than your teeth when you brush them too hard. This tends to result in bleeding.
How would you know if you’ve been brushing your teeth too hard? Here are the most obvious signs:
If you’re experiencing any of these, there’s a good chance that you’re damaging your own teeth and gums by trying to clean your mouth too roughly.
2. You’re Not Doing The Correct Flossing Technique
Lots of people experience bleeding when they floss their teeth which make the entire activity a lot more stressful. However, according to some experts, it’s perfectly normal for the gums to bleed when flossing for the first time.
If it stops bleeding immediately, there’s nothing to worry about. However, if it doesn’t, there’s a reason to be concerned. The American Dental Association actually recommends seeing a dentist if this happens.
Why do gums bleed when flossing?
Mostly it’s because you apply too much force when inserting the floss in between your teeth. Due to its size, it can easily create a cut into the soft gum tissue. So if you’re not careful, there’s a good chance that your improper flossing technique will always cause your gums to bleed.
3. You Have Gum Disease
This is the very reason why bleeding gums should raise an alarm among people who experience it on a regular basis. Gum diseases are serious concerns because it can result in tooth loss and severe infection.
There are two kinds of gum conditions that you can experience.
Gingivitis is considered as the mild form that is commonly experienced by the general populace today. It’s characterized by irritated, red, swollen and inflamed gums that surround the teeth known as the gingiva.
Often caused by plaque buildup on your teeth, causing your teeth to be infested by bacteria that can irritate your gum line. It won’t just irritate your gingiva that makes your gums bleed easily but can also cause tooth decay.
Periodontitis is the other and more serious type of gum disease that can be the very reason why your gums won’t stop bleeding. It’s described as the condition that damages bones and soft tissue that supports your teeth.
So if it’s not treated right away, it can lead to your tooth loosening or even detaching completely from your gums.
This condition makes your gums tender, sore, puffy and darker so it’s easier to damage when pressure is applied. This causes bleeding and it usually doesn’t stop right away.
It can also cause your gums to recede which will make your teeth look longer and have pus. In serious cases, it can create spaces between your teeth and lead to gum tissue death which can cause a serious infection.
4. You’re Wearing Dentures
There are a few ways how dentures can cause gum bleeding. Some of the most common examples are the following:
5. Experiencing Some Hormonal Changes
Hormonal changes also tend to make the gums more sensitive. This causes it to get damaged easily which results in bleeding.
So if you’re pregnant, menopausal, or going through your monthly menstruation cycle, it’s highly likely that your gums will bleed more easily. Those who are altering their hormone levels can also expect to experience gum bleeding frequently.
6. You Have Tooth Cavities
If your teeth are damaged, it can also make your gums more prone to bleeding. The very things that caused your cavities could be damaging your gums and causing it to bleed.
The exposure of the soft tissues under your teeth due to the cavity can also make your gums more susceptible to damage.
7. You Have Vitamin Deficiencies
If you’re suffering from vitamin C and K deficiency, you can also expect your gums to bleed easily. Vitamin C’s antioxidant properties are essential in building and maintaining healthy gums. Ample amounts of vitamin K ensures proper blood clotting. Without it, you tend to bleed more than necessary.
8. You're Suffering From Select Ailments
Bleeding disorders like hemophilia, leukemia, thrombocytopenia, as well as diabetes can also cause your gums to seriously bleed. This is mostly because they prevent the body to heal and stop the bleeding right away.
9. Medications Are Causing Your Gums To Bleed
Some medications also cause gum bleeding as a side effect. It’s best to research about the prescription drugs that you’re taking to learn if they’re making your gums bleed.
10. Gums Have Experienced Previous Trauma
In some occasions, your gums can also experience trauma that can injure it and cause it to bleed. This can be caused by a lot of different things and might also come with other kinds of injuries.
Ways To Treat Bleeding Gums Right Away
Now that you know why your gums bleed, the next thing that you might be interested to learn about is how to stop bleeding gums immediately.
Here are a few techniques that you should keep in mind.
1. Brush Your Teeth The Right Way
If the very reason why you experience gum bleeding is because the way you brush your teeth, you should learn how to brush your teeth gently. This can immediately stop your gums from gushing out blood if there are no other reasons for them to bleed.
2. Floss Carefully
A lot of people experience gum bleeding when they floss because they’re too rash in inserting the thread in between their teeth. This tends to applying a heavy impact into the gums which can result in bleeding.
So if you’re a bit gentler and more careful in accomplishing this grooming step, then you won’t have to worry about cutting your gums in the process.
If you want to avoid making the said mistake ever again, you can also just opt for a convenient option such as the Best Waterpik Cordless Water Flosser instead.
Water flossers, as the name suggests, use water instead of a solid dental thread to clean the space between your teeth. This can free you from having to handle dental floss carefully so you won’t cut your gums with them.
2. Rinse Your Mouth With Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide might seem like a scary chemical to use inside your mouth but it’s actually a pretty common oral health ingredient. Not only is it widely used to remove teeth stains that can help you whiten your teeth but it’s also very useful in promoting gum health.
This is why it’s also recommended to help deal with bleeding gums.
Experts recommend gargling with hydrogen peroxide to stop gums from bleeding. Because of its potent antibacterial properties, it can help prevent bacteria from causing an infection in the cut in your gums. This can then help speed up the healing process.
The gargling in itself can also be very helpful in applying ample pressure to the cut to help make it stop bleeding. So if you have good oral hygiene, doing this might already stop the bleeding of your gums entirely.
3. Rinse Your Mouth With Salt Water
One of the best and easiest home remedies for bleeding gums would be to rinse your mouth with salt water.
All you have to do is to mix a teaspoon of salt into a glass of warm water and use it as a mouth rinse. The salt will help cleanse your mouth and prevent infections while drying up the cut.
4. Apply A Cold Compress On The Problem Area
If a trauma caused your gums to bleed, applying a cold compress on the affected area can be the best way to deal with it. It might seem complicated but it’s actually quite simple to accomplish. Applying an ice pack on the cheek, near the affected area, would already suffice.
You might be tempted to suck on an ice cube or crunch some ice chips but it’s not recommended in some occasions. The low temperature affects your teeth and might hurt you in another way. So it’s just best to stick with the ice pack on your cheek method.
5. Apply Direct Pressure On The Injured Gum
It’s a well known fact that applying pressure on the injured area can stop bleeding so this method can also work for your gums in some cases. Doing this will help slow down the blood flow, so there would be less blood that your body can release.
This is only recommended if you have healthy gums and if the bleeding is caused by trauma. Experts recommend to apply direct pressure on the injured gum to control the bleeding.
Make sure to use a sterile gauze when doing this. Don’t directly put your bare hand on the injured gum as it might cause an infection and make the situation worse.
Ways To Keep Your Gums Healthy
Aside from stopping your gums from bleeding, you might also want to know how you can prevent it from happening again.
By learning a few tricks in keeping your gums in great health, you might not even have to suffer from bleeding gums ever again.
1. Practice Better Oral Hygiene
Having a good oral hygiene will keep your gums healthy. This will ensure that your gums will be stronger and more resistant to damage.
So if you absolutely don’t want to experience bleeding gums ever again, this is one of the best ways to achieve your goal.
How do you practice good oral hygiene? Here are the most basic tips that you should keep in mind:
2. Medications Or Illness May Be The Cause
If other things like another ailment or a medication is causing your gums to bleed, then, you should also address those right away. Some people might not be aware that they have certain ailments until they pay attention to what could be considered as a normal thing to experience.
Bleeding gums might not seem like the most alarming symptoms of certain illnesses but it could be a telling sign. This is especially true if you’re a hundred percent certain that you have a stellar oral hygiene.
If you’re not completely sure about which condition is causing your gums to bleed, then seeing a dentist would be the best initial action. If your dentist clears your mouth, then you should see a specialist to get a diagnosis.
Your medication could be what is causing your gums to bleed, it might be best to see your doctor right away to ask for a different prescription.
While bleeding gums might not seem inconsequential as a side effect, it can still be very bothersome if it happens a lot. Changing your meds can get rid of bleeding gums. So it can definitely be a good option for you to address the condition.
3. Manage Your Stress Better
According to one study, there’s a link between periodontal diseases and emotional stress. And because stress is known to reduce the immune system’s capacity to fight off infections, it’s not hard to see how it can also compromise your oral health.
Too much stress might make your body incapable of fighting a gum infection. This can then make your gums weaker and more prone to bleeding.
Some also say that emotional stress can also cause people to neglect their oral health. This, of course, can result in poor dental hygiene, accumulation of plaque and tooth cavities.
While more research is still needed to determine how much emotional stress can weaken the immune system. There’s no denying that being in a good mental state can really help you stay in good health. This includes preventing gum bleeding.
4. Enrich Your Diet With Healthy Food
Certain food items can help improve your gum health. Most of them are fruits and vegetables as the nutrients and minerals they contain can help boost body functions.
How to stop bleeding gums with an improved diet?
First off, drink more green tea. This refreshing drink can help you get a good load of catechin. This is an antioxidant that helps reduce your body’s inflammatory response towards bacteria.
As the mouth is loaded with bacteria that can weaken your gum health, this ingredient can really come in handy in preventing periodontal disease and gum bleeding.
Eating foods that are rich in vitamins C and K is also highly recommended. As mentioned above, being deficient of these two vitamins can also cause weak gums. It’s important to get the recommended amount of these two to ensure good gum health.
What should you eat to get more vitamin C in your system? Here are a few:
How about vitamin K? Here are some items you should nosh on:
5. Use The Right Products To Prevent Gum Disease
You can also use some products to help you prevent gum diseases. There are some advertised as the best toothpaste for bleeding gums and they might be worth a try. Just make sure to check their ingredients first before using them as a treatment for bleeding gums.
You can also find actual toothbrushes that can help you improve your oral hygiene. There are advanced features in some that will help you apply the right amount of pressure to thoroughly clean your choppers.
You can even find some that will provide personal coaching on how you should care for your teeth. With these, you can definitely improve your gum health and learn how to stop bleeding gums altogether.
6. Stop Smoking
Smoking makes it more difficult for your gum disease to get better because it weakens your immune system. This is why smokers are more likely to develop gum diseases than non-smokers.
If you’ll ditch the tobacco, you’ll have to worry less about gum diseases if you already practice good oral hygiene.
7. Cut Down On Your Carbohydrate Consumption
If you need another reason to eat less carbs, this should be it. Apparently, cutting down your carbohydrates intake can also help promote your gum health.
Sugary and starchy foods increase the production of plaque and bacterial growth inside your mouth. Therefore minimizing your consumption can help lower your risks of having bleeding gums.
8. Use Your Dentures Properly
As mentioned above, wearing dentures can also make you more prone to gum bleeding, especially if you don’t use them properly. So if you don’t want your fake teeth to cause trouble instead of improving your smile, then you should keep these tips in mind:
- Get the right fit. Ill-fitting dentures can cause trauma and injure your gums that can lead to bleeding so make sure to get a well-fitted piece.
- Remove them at night. This will let your gums breathe as it could be the only time that they’re free from any coverings.
- Clean your gums and dentures properly. Again, the mouth is packed with harmful bacteria so you should make sure to clean your dentures before and after you wear them. Make sure they’re also properly stored when they’re not in use to prevent other harmful microbes from getting to them. Those can also get into your system when you wear your dentures and can hurt your gums as a result.
How To Stop Bleeding Gums, Answered!
As this guide will tell you, there are many of ways on how to stop bleeding gums. But at the end of the day, all of it still depends on how you’re going to execute them.
Without the proper application of these tips, you might still end up experiencing the same issue. So if you want to free yourself from this condition once and for all, make sure to follow these tips properly.
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