One day when brushing your teeth, you notice that your gums are swollen. Whether they’re puffy, red, or tender to the touch, swollen gums aren’t something that should be ignored. While not all causes are something serious, some require prompt treatment to keep things from getting out of hand. Read on to learn about some of the causes of swollen gums and how to treat this issue.
4 Potential Causes of Swollen Gums
There are several things that can cause one’s gums to become swollen. A few common causes include:
- Gingivitis – This is the first stage of periodontal disease, which is an infection of the gums that causes them to become swollen and irritated. It is most often caused by poor oral hygiene.
- Pregnancy – Swollen gums can occur when pregnant due to the rush of hormones produced by your body increasing the blood flow to your gums.
- Malnutrition – A deficiency of vitamins, especially B and C, can cause your gums to swell.
- Infection – Herpes, thrush, and other oral infections can lead to swollen gums.
How Dentists Treat Swollen Gums
If it takes more than two weeks for the swelling to go down, make an appointment to see your dentist. They will perform an examination to determine the cause of the inflation and what treatment options will work best. They will also take X-rays to see if there has been any bone loss.
Oral rinses may be prescribed to help prevent plaque and reduce gingivitis. Your dentist may also recommend using a specific brand of toothpaste. Additionally, antibiotics may be necessary in some cases.
Extreme cases of gingivitis may require surgery, but this is usually only recommended for patients with periodontitis, a more advanced form of this infection. Other potential treatment options include gum grafting, bone grafting, and pocket depth reduction.
At-home Treatment Options
There are also several ways that you can treat swollen gums at home, such as:
- Brush and floss – Gently clean your teeth to soothe your gums.
- Rinse with saltwater – Make a saltwater solution by adding ½ a teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water. Swish it all over your mouth for 10 to 15 seconds to get rid of bacteria.
- Drink lots of water – This will help stimulate saliva production, which neutralizes acids and washes away harmful oral bacteria.
- Avoid irritants – This includes strong mouthwashes, alcohol, and cigarettes.
- Use a compress – Place a warm compress over the affected area to lessen gum pain or a cold compress to decrease swelling.
About the Practice
Oral health issues will soon be a thing of the past with the skilled team at Frisco Periodontics and Dental Implants. Dr. Zachary Carnow is passionate about offering the residents of Frisco and the surrounding communities a variety of procedures, such as periodontal therapy to treat swollen, irritated gums. Hee can also teach you how to better care for your smile at home. If you are interested in making an appointment with Frisco Periodontics and Dental Implants or want to learn more about their services, call their office at (214) 619-4990 or visit their website.