Gingivitis is often talked about, but not many people know exactly what is going on when they are diagnosed with it. Well, your friendly Valencia dentist is here to help explain it to you.
Gingivitis is inflammation of the gingiva, A.K.A. your gums. Inflammation is most commonly caused by buildups of bacteria, more commonly called plaque. This bacterial buildup causes an immune response from your body, typically resulting in swelling. Gingivitis is also a mild, non-destructive form of periodontal disease.
However, if left untreated, gingivitis can become periodontitis, which can result in tooth loss.
If your teeth bleed when you brush them, or if your gums are red and puffy, you may want to get checked for gingivitis. Sometimes, you may have it without even realizing it, due to milder symptoms. Luckily, good oral hygiene is typically enough to help rid yourself of gingivitis, including brushing and flossing, and the use of antiseptic mouthwashes.
Some other common symptoms are swollen gums, tender or painful gums, bad breath, flexible or soft gums, and bleeding gums. If you have any combination of these symptoms, it may prove beneficial to meet with your friendly Valencia dentist as soon as possible.
Keep in mind that plaque buildup is not the only cause of gingivitis. Cancer, diabetes, and HIV are linked to higher risks of developing gingivitis. Smoking commonly causes gingivitis, as well as some medications. Finally, hormones can play a part in it, especially during puberty, menopause, or even pregnancy – they lead to more sensitive gums, increasing their risk of inflammation.
There are many treatments your friendly Valencia dentist can discuss with you, most of them can be done from your own home. If you have any questions or concerns, schedule your appointment today.