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Signs of Gum Disease

Did you know that gum disease is a very common dental problem? A survey completed in the US found that nearly half of all adults had some form of gum disease. In Singapore, the situation would be quite the same. Gum disease is common because in the early stages of the disease,  the signs of the disease are very subtle. It’s very easy not to notice them. 

Think back, were there days when after brushing your teeth, you spit out your toothpaste and you find that your toothpaste has turned pink? Or you look at your toothbrush and there are red stains on the brush?. If you have noticed either of these, you might be having gum disease. 

To help you identify the signs of gum diseases, we’ve prepared a list of the warning signs of gum disease that you should look out for.

 

 

1. Redness of the Gums


One of the first signs of gum infection is gingivitis. This is the initial stage of periodontal or gum disease that causes redness of the gums. Have a look at this picture, can you see the slight redness of the gums? 

red gums

 

A common cause of gingivitis is poor oral hygiene. If left untreated by the dentist or dental hygienist, gingivitis can advance to periodontitis and result in bone loss around the tooth. 

2. Puffy or Swollen Gums


Another sign of gum disease is the inflammation of the gums causing it to look puffy or swollen. Puffy or swollen gums is another sign of gingivitis. 

gingivitis gums

 

Gingivitis is the  result of poor dental hygiene causing bacterial plaque to constantly accumulate between  the gum line and teeth. When you lack good oral hygiene or skip regular professional cleanings, the built up bacterial plaque causes inflammation. 

3. Bleeding from the Gums


Did you know that bleeding from the gums is not normal? If you bleed easily when brushing your teeth, it is a sign that something is not right. The primary reason for bleeding gums is the accumulation of plaque at the gum line. 

When bacterial plaque is not removed properly, it will harden into tartar or calculus, resulting in increased bleeding and an advanced stage of gum and bone disease known as periodontitis. If you experience frequent bleeding of the gums, we advise you to visit a dentist or dental hygienist to identify the extent of the  gum disease, and remove the accumulated plaque and calculus.

 

brushing gums

 

4. Bad Breath 


Bad breath. Yes, bad breath – you can’t see it and people may not tell you about it. Persistent bad breath can be a sign of gum disease. After all, if you accumulate bacterial plaque and calculus and have a diseased mouth, your breath can’t smell sweet! 

 

Causes of Gum Disease

It’s bacteria. Bacteria that accumulate as plaque and tartar in between your teeth and around your gums. Plaque is the soft whitish film of bacteria that forms on your teeth soon after eating. Bacterial plaque can be removed with correct brushing and flossing techniques. Calculus (also known as tartar) is a hardened coating of bacteria. Both need to be removed by your dentist. 

 

What To Do If You Experience These Signs

Well, firstly, see your dentist and have your teeth and gums thoroughly cleaned. Your dentist can go into places that you can’t get into and clean away the debris that you can’t get rid of. After that, you will enjoy really clean smooth teeth. 

The next step is to learn how to clean your teeth well. We are happy to teach you how to brush or floss your teeth so that you can maintain clean, healthy teeth and gums.

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Nuffield Dental is a one-stop, multi-disciplinary dental care centre. Here at Nuffield Dental, we pride ourselves of our personalised oral care for each and every one of our patients. We need to make sure you get all the help you need to make your dental procedures comfortable, accessible and seamless.

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