Known as the “silent disease,” most patients don’t realize they have periodontal (gum) disease until it advances and causes discomfort or noticeable damage. Bleeding gums is a common sign of early gum disease, indicating that infection may be present and should be addressed as soon as possible.

Dr. Mojgan Mazhari and the team at Alexandria Dental Health & Smile Studio offer periodontal therapy for the signs and symptoms of gum disease to restore health. If you notice bleeding gums, here are the steps to take to prevent further damage to gum tissue and teeth.

What Causes Bleeding Gums?

Bleeding gums are an indication that the gums are irritated or inflamed, most likely as a result of plaque building up along the gum line. This early stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis and should be addressed as soon as possible to avoid further progression of periodontal disease. There are other reasons for bleeding gums, including:

  • Pregnancy. Increased hormone levels often make the gums sensitive and prone to bleeding during oral hygiene care.
  • Aggressive tooth brushing. Using a hard-bristled toothbrush or brushing too hard can cause the gums to bleed.
  • Medical conditions. Certain health problems—such as blood disorders, autoimmune issues, systemic infections, and others—might result in sensitive gums that bleed.
  • Poor nutrition. Vitamin deficiencies and nutritional concerns can lead to bleeding gums and periodontal disease.

Bleeding Gum Treatment Options

There are many treatment solutions for bleeding gums related to dental care, such as: 

  • Professional dental cleaning. During this procedure, the dentist or dental hygienist will remove plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) from the teeth and gumline. This helps to eliminate the source of bacterial infection and reduce gum inflammation. 
  • Treatment for gum disease. If the bleeding gums are due to more advanced gum disease (periodontitis), we may recommend additional treatments such as gum pocket reduction surgery or gum grafting to restore gum health.
  • Antimicrobial mouthwash. This helps control bacterial growth and reduce gum inflammation.
  • Improving dental hygiene. We provide guidance on proper oral hygiene practices, including brushing techniques, flossing, and the use of interdental brushes or floss picks. 
  • Lifestyle changes. Recommendations may include smoking cessation, improving diet, and reducing stress.

If you have noticed that your gums bleed during routine tooth brushing or eating, mention this during your visits to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment.