Healthy gums offer a perfect backdrop for your pearly whites, but sometimes inflammation can cause this tissue to become swollen. When your gums are swollen, they protrude or bulge out; the swelling usually begins where the gum meets the tooth. Sometimes New York gum swelling can be so severe that it hides or covers parts of your teeth, making them appear unusually smaller. Healthy gums are usually pink but inflamed, or swollen gums appear red. If you have swollen gums, it could be due to one of the following causes.
Gingivitis is a common cause of swollen gums; it is a gum disease that causes inflammation in your gums. The symptoms of gingivitis are usually mild; therefore, most people may not know they have this dental problem. When left untreated, gingivitis can progress to a more severe condition called periodontitis, and one may suffer tooth loss. The most common cause of gingivitis is poor oral hygiene; this allows plaque to build up on your teeth and gum line. Plaque is a mixture of bacteria and food deposits that accumulate on the teeth over time.
When plaque is left on the teeth for more than a few days, it develops into a hard substance called tartar. Tartar requires professional cleaning since it can’t be removed with regular flossing and brushing.
Swollen gums can also be due to vitamin B and C deficiency. Including vitamin C in your diet is vital since the nutrient plays an essential role in maintaining and repairing your teeth and gums. A drop in vitamin C levels can cause scurvy, which can cause anemia and gum disease.
Your body undergoes various changes during pregnancy. Although this is necessary for the development of the fetus, it often causes undesirable side effects. For example, the rush of hormones your body produces during pregnancy may increase blood flow in your gums, causing swelling. These hormonal changes can also affect your body’s ability to fight off bacteria that cause gum infections; this increases your chances of developing gingivitis.
Swollen gums can also be due to infections caused by fungi and viruses. For example, individuals with herpes can develop herpetic gingivostomatitis, which causes swollen gums. Thrush – an overgrowth of naturally occurring yeast in the mouth can also cause gum swelling. You may also have localized gum swelling due to untreated dental decay.
Treatment for swollen gums depends on the cause; your dentist may prescribe oral rinses to reduce plaque and prevent gingivitis. They may also advise that you use a specific brand of toothpaste. Antibiotics may be necessary in some cases to fight and prevent infection. Severe gingivitis may require surgery to remove plaque and tartar and gum reshaping.
Scaling and root planing is a common treatment option whereby a dentist scrapes away plaque and tartar on the roots of teeth.
The good news is that you can prevent swollen gums by maintaining proper oral care, like brushing twice a day and flossing regularly. Be sure to visit your dentist every six months and discuss any symptoms you may have.
If you have swollen gums, visit your dentist at Compassionate Endodontists for treatment to improve your oral health.