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Gingivitis (pronounced "jin-ja-VI-tus"), is the inflamation, swelling, and bleeding of gum tissues. Have you ever wondered when your gums bleed when you brush your teeth? It is a first sign of gingivitis.
The primary cause of gingivitis is the bacteria that coats your teeth, and if oral hygiene is poor, it forms a sticky white substance called plaque. The bacteria here proliferates faster and produces toxins that irritates your gums, keeping them swollen and red. When they are left untreated, they will destroy the tissues connecting the gums to the tooth, and eventually the tooth to the bones, causing a deep pocket and eventually attacks the bony structure. It has now progressed into what we call periodontitis which is an irriversible form of gum disease.
If the primary cause of gingivitis is bacteria, then the solution is to fight bacteria.
Toothbrushes comes in different types of bristles. Choose the soft bristled toothbrushes. This will not damage your gums and you will not worry too much about your brushing technique.
During pregnancy and menstruation, hormones do fluctuate, and due to some physiologic reasons, they cause inflammation to gums. Inflamed gums usually bleed when disturbed, and in some, even a slight stroke causes bleeding. Meticolous maintenance of oral hygiene is very important during this period. Try to be careful also in brushing and flossing.
When brushing your teeth, include your tongue and palate. Bacteria can also lodge in these areas, and when you have gingivitis, they can prolong your agony.
No matter how well and how often you brush your teeth, you can't reach the areas between your teeth and below the gums. Make the habit of flossing. Floss comes in very handy. Hve one in your bag or at your office. After meal, floss it!
If you already have gingivitis and just have started to brush and floss more seriously, it might initiate more bleeding. Be patient. It might take weeks to eliminate bacteria and the gums to heal. But if bleeding persist for more than 3 weeks despite good oral hygiene program, call your dentist.
You might not be able to grab a toothbrush or a floss anywhere after a meal. Make it a habit to at least rinse with water. This will help wash out some food debris that are stuck in your teeth.
With a pinch of salt soked in a glass of lukewarm water, you now create a homemade saline solution. Use this to rinse in the morning and in the evening. This will help increase circulation in your gums and reduce the swelling.
One good way to increase fresh blood circulation towards your gums is to stimulate it. You can use your index finger or thumb to do this. Place your index finger or thumb on your gums and do a circular motion towards your teeth.
Vitamin C helps fight off infection. They also help your oral tissues healthy and resistant to bacteria.
People under stress are great risk to gingivitis. Reduce your risk by properly managing your stress.
Not all debris can be taken out by toothbrushing alone. Get an oral prophylaxis from your dentist with a suggested frequency of twice a year. In this way, your teeth and gums will be professionally cleaned and checked for any problems.