Finding pink streaks in the sink after brushing is never a welcome discovery, and for good reason. Excessive gum bleeding can be a sign of some serious dental problems, including periodontal disease. However, bleeding gums can also simply indicate that you’re brushing or flossing too hard.
Excessive gum bleeding should always be taken seriously, so do see your dentist if you have reason for concern. But there are also a number of other reasons why you may be experiencing this symptom. We discuss a few of them below:
1. Gum Disease
One of the earliest and most common signs of gum disease is bleeding and weak gums. Other symptoms include receding gums, consistently bad breath, and, in extreme cases, loose teeth and pus stemming from the gumline.
If you spot any of these other symptoms, it’s especially important that you see a dentist right away. To help minimize your risk and help keep your mouth healthy, floss your teeth regularly. Maintaining a once-a-day flossing habit keeps dangerous bacteria from growing between your teeth, where it can easily move into your gums and cause difficult infections.
2. Overly Rough Brushing
It can be easy to forget that the word “brushing” is meant to suggest gentle, repetitive strokes, instead of harshly scraping the toothbrush bristles against your teeth and gums. When you brush too aggressively, your gums can quickly become irritated, causing abrasions, sensitivity, and occasional bleeding.
If you notice that your gums are bleeding during or after brushing, try letting up on the toothbrush first. If you still notice bleeding after a few days, then the problem may lie elsewhere.
Bleeding gums and gum disease are also common problems among smokers. Over time, the different chemicals in cigarettes and other tobacco products, as well as the heat of the smoke itself, damage the gums, causing them to bleed and become vulnerable to bacteria.
The best way to prevent this damage is, of course, to quit smoking. Smokers should also seek out regular dental care and checkups, and take extra care to maintain consistent routines in brushing and flossing.
4. Unhealthy Diet
In order to stay healthy, your gums need the right amount of vitamins and minerals, just like the rest of your body. If your diet consists of too many sugars and processed foods, and without enough whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, your gums can suffer for it. Gums struggling for vitamins and minerals can become weak and bleed while brushing. To remedy this, try to introduce more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains into your diet. You can also consider taking magnesium and a multi-vitamin. As always, you should consult your doctor and/or dentist before trying new supplements.
Overall, pay attention to the nature of your gum bleeding. If you continue to see bleeding for more than a few days, you should make an appointment to see a dentist right away.
At My Family Dentistry, we work hard to treat gum disease and keep our patients healthy. Contact us to schedule an appointment and learn more ways to ensure your oral health.