Best Treatment Options for Swollen Gums
Your oral health depends on your gums and their health. The gums are firm and pink cover the jawbone. They are thick, full of blood vessels, and fibrous.
Swelling in your gums can cause them to protrude or bulge. The swelling begins where the gum and tooth meet. Swelling gums can start to hide portions of your teeth. They appear red instead of their natural pink color. Gingival swelling is another name for swollen gums that are often sensitive, painful, and irritated. In these conditions, your gums begin to bleed easily when you are brushing or flossing your teeth.
What Are the Causes of Swollen Gums?
Gingivitis is the most common reason for swollen gums. It is a gum disease that causes irritation and swelling in the gingival tissue. The symptoms of this condition are mild, and most people affected by gingivitis are not aware of the infection. However, when it is not treated, gingivitis can progress to a severe condition known as periodontitis, which can also cause tooth loss.
Poor oral hygiene, which allows plaque to buildup on the teeth and gum line, is the primary cause of gingivitis. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria and food particles accumulating on the teeth over time. When plaque is not removed by brushing correctly, it can harden into tartar. Tartar cannot be removed by brushing and flossing and will need intervention from a dentist who may offer periodontal treatment to the affected individual.
Hormonal changes during pregnancy can also cause swollen gums. Vitamin B and C deficiencies can also result in gum swelling. People deficient in vitamin C develop scurvy, which can cause anemia and gum disease. The problem of vitamin deficiencies is not common in developed countries, and wherever noticed is only present in older adults.
Infections caused by fungi and viruses are also a reason for swollen gums. People affected by herpes can suffer from a condition known as acute herpetic gingivostomatitis, which causes swollen gums. Gums swelling is also a result of the overgrowth of naturally occurring yeast in the mouth. Untreated dental decay can lead to dental abscesses, which are localized gum swelling.
The Treatment Options for Swollen Gums
People with swollen gums for over two weeks must discuss the problem with their dentist. They must be prepared to answer questions the dentist will pose to them. The items will relate to when the problems began and how often they occur. Full mouth x-rays may be required to evaluate the condition and offer proper treatment choices. The dentist will want to know the patient is pregnant and whether they have made any changes to their diet recently. Blood tests may be conducted to verify the presence of an infection.
Depending on the reasons for swollen gums, the dentist may prescribe oral rinses that are helpful to prevent gingivitis and reduce plaque. A specific brand of toothpaste may be recommended for use, and in some cases, antibiotics may also be necessary.
Patients with advanced gingivitis will need surgery to treat the condition. The most common treatment offered for patients with this condition is scaling and root planing. In this procedure, the dentist will scrape away the plaque and tartar from the diseased gums and on the roots of the teeth to allow the gums to begin healing. In severe cases, the patient will be advised flap surgery as a method of periodontal treatment.
Patients can also adopt specific home remedies if they are confident they can treat the swollen gums with care. They must avoid irritating their gums by brushing and flossing gently and rinse their mouth with salt water to eliminate any bacteria. However, it would be better to seek advice from a dentist or periodontist to manage the problem of swollen gums as these are specialists in dealing with issues in the gingival tissue.
Can Swollen Gums Be Prevented?
Swollen gums can easily be prevented by using standard self-care methods that will prevent the condition. Maintaining proper oral care and having healthy foods is the first step patient can take to avoid this problem. Patients must brush and floss regularly after meals and visit their dentist every six months for cleanings and examinations. Patients with dry mouths are increasing the risk of plaque and tartar buildup. They must discuss with their dentist about oral care products that will help them to avoid swollen gums.