Inflamed gums (Gingivitis): causes, symptoms and treatment

Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease (periodontitis or peri-implantitis). Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an infection of the tissues that surround your teeth and is caused by a build-up of plaque. Research reveals that the body and oral health are closely related. Gum disease can have a serious impact on your health. Scientific research has shown a relationship with other diseases, like heart disease, systemic diseases, Alzheimers and diabetes.  

What causes inflamed gums?

Inflamed gums can be caused by bacteria in the plaque. Plaque is a combination of a soft and sticky and an almost invisible layer of protein and bacteria on your teeth. This can result into tartar. If you don’t do anything about this, more and more layers of tartar will develop. If your dental hygiene isn’t up to mark, your gum can start bleeding and even be infected. If there are too many layers present you cannot get rid of this yourself anymore. For this problem you should contact your dentist or dental hygienist. The inflammation is usually reversible, but when present chronically it can spread to the deeper bone tissue.

Some factors that strongly contribute to a higher risk of developing gingivitis:

  • Poor dental care
  • Smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Genetics crooked teeth that are hard to keep clean
  • Pregnancy
  • Diabetes
  • Medications, including steroids, certain types of anti-epilepsy drugs, cancer therapy drugs, some calcium channel blockers and oral contraceptives
woman brushing teeth in kitchen

Signs and symptoms of gingivitis

A symptom is a phenomenon that can only be felt and described by the patient, such as tender and therefore painful gums, whereas a sign is something visible, to be recognized by a doctor or nurse.

Some symptoms that may indicate periodontitis:

  • Gums are bright red or purple
  • Gums bleed easily when brushing teeth or flossing
  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Inflammation (swollen gums)
  • Receding gums
  • Soft gums

These symptoms can indicate inflamed gums. Because people with inflamed gums don’t feel pain, they often carry on walking with these symptoms far too long. To test if your gum is inflamed use a toothpick and pick between all your teeth. Repeat this several times between every tooth. Healthy gums won’t bleed, but if it does start to bleed – that is a sign of inflammation.

The risks of inflamed gums

Decay of the bone (periodontitis) is the greatest risk when it comes to chronically inflamed gums. Long-lasting gingivitis can result into loose teeth and this can cause cavities around your teeth. In this cavity new plaque can start building up. The infection will spread even further. The infection will destroy the periodontal fiber and as a result part of the jawbone can break off. This will result in bigger pockets. This process does not stop. It’s very important to treat these symptoms well (preferably at an early stage) so that the jaw bone keeps intact. We are happy to tell you that the usage of our products can even help developing new jaw bone.

Implants and chronically inflamed gums can cause peri-implantitis. It means that bone structures around your teeth break off. It can have severe consequences, such as the loosening of your implants or even losing your implants.


How to treat and prevent inflamed gums?

Gingivitis is preventable. A good oral hygiene is a great help. The first step is brushing your teeth thoroughly. Don’t forget to floss and rinse. Our products contribute to a good oral hygiene. Ask your dentist or dental hygienist for advice.

To treat these symptoms we advise you to use our oral gel. Bluem® oral gel is unique because of the high level of active oxygen. Oxygen is important in every step as far as the 5 steps of the healing process of wounds are concerned. Bluem® oral gel:

  • Normalizes and controls harmful bacteria
  • Reduces and prevents inflammation
  • Accelerates the wound healing process

Gum disease is usually painless, you may not even feel it. This is why it’s important to plan regular dental check-ups in addition to maintaining a good dental routine of brushing and flossing.

Frequently asked questions about inflamed gums

What does healthy gum look like?

Healthy gum is pink, tight around your teeth and implants and doesn’t bleed whilst brushing.

Bleeding gum, now what?

Bleeding gum means that your oral health is in a bad condition. Gingivitis is one of the possibilities. Bleeding gum is often seen with sensitivity, redness and swelling. This is not always noticeable. In some cases a bad taste in the mouth can be a lead. Ask your dentist or dental hygienist for help.

What is gingivitis?

Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums. Without treatment it can result in periodontitis.

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