Your gums are the cornerstone of your oral health. Made of firm, pink tissue that covers your jawbone, your gums are thick, fibrous and full of blood vessels. When your gums swell, they may protrude or bulge out. Indeed, your gums may have become so swollen that they have begun to hide parts of your teeth and appear red instead of pink. For more information on causes and preventative measures, please read on, then contact one of our experienced general dentistry dentists located in Basking Ridge and Morristown, NJ as soon as possible. Some questions you may have include:
What causes swollen gums?
Many factors can contribute to inflamed gums, including:
- Gingivitis: As the most common cause of red and inflamed gums, gingivitis usually stems from poor oral hygiene, which allows plaque to build up on the gum line and teeth. If plaque remains on the teeth for more than a few days, it becomes tartar. If left untreated, gingivitis can eventually lead to a much more serious condition called periodontitis and possible tooth loss.
- Pregnancy: The rush of hormones your body produces during pregnancy may increase the blood flow in your gums, which could cause your gums to be more easily irritated and lead to swelling. In addition, these hormonal changes could hinder your body’s ability to fight off gum infection-causing bacteria.
- Malnutrition: A deficiency in vitamins, especially vitamins B and C, can cause gum swelling. For example, vitamin C helps maintains and repair your teeth and gums. Without it, you can develop scurvy, which can cause anemia and gum disease.
- Infection: Infections caused by fungi and viruses, herpes, thrush and untreated dental decay can all cause gums to swell.
How do you prevent swollen gums?
You can take the following preventative measures to avoid red and irritated gums:
- Oral care: Brush and floss regularly, especially after meals. Visit a dentist every six months for a cleaning and discuss any other symptoms you may be experiencing. Your dentist could advise you about anti-septic mouthwashes and toothpastes that can improve gum health.
- De-stress: Some research suggests that chronic stress could result in an increased risk of gum disease. Specifically, stress may increase the severity of gum problems and reduce the effectiveness of treatments. You should find ways to relieve stress.
- Different toothpastes: Certain types of toothpaste contain ingredients that could help improve oral health by decreasing tooth sensitivity, soothing gum inflammation, reducing tartar build-up or preventing enamel erosion.
Speak with a member of our team if you have any additional questions. We can help resolve your gum issues with a minimum of discomfort and inconvenience.
Contact The Dental Associates of Basking Ridge
Please contact us today to schedule an appointment if you have any dental issues.