Symptoms of Gingivitis

Dental_CareWhen it comes to gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease, there is good news and bad news. The bad news is that 50 to 90 percent of adults have this condition around at least one tooth in their mouth. The good news is that gingivitis is completely reversible with proper dental care.

Gingivitis is a mild inflammation of the gums caused by bacterial plaque that can form on our teeth if we are not able to completely remove debris with through brushing and flossing. Since pain is not always associated with gingivitis, it’s important to know the other symptoms of this condition so that you can see your dentist to receive appropriate dental care, and step up your oral health regimen at home, in order to start the healing process.

Know the symptoms of gingivitis

You may have gingivitis if you have any of the following …

  • Red, puffy, or swollen gums.
  • Gums that are bleeding for any reason.
  • Halitosis (bad breath).
  • Receding gums.
  • Sometimes, there will be tenderness or sensitivity of the gums associated with the above symptoms.

Some health conditions and other factors can influence the development of gingivitis. You may be more susceptible to develop gingivitis if you:

  • Are pregnant.
  • Smoke cigarettes or use other tobacco products.
  • Take medications that cause dry mouth (xerostomia).
  • Have diabetes or another chronic illness such as HIV/AIDS.
  • Have a family history of challenges with tooth decay or gum disease.

Regular checkups, as directed by your provider, can help your dentist detect gum disease early, when it is easily treatable, and will help your dental team keep the amount of bacterial plaque on your teeth – a major factor in the development of gingivitis – at a low level by performing prophylactic cleanings.

“While gingivitis is a common condition, regular dental care can ensure it doesn’t impede your personal life,” says Dr. Carol Ford, a cosmetic dentist based in central Phoenix.

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