Would you ignore bleeding if you saw it coming from any part of your body? If your eye was bleeding when you opened it in the morning? If your hand started bleeding at work? Wouldn’t you do something about it? Why is it that we ignore bleeding gums? Even a trace of blood from gums upon brushing or flossing is not normal.
Bleeding from gums means there is inflammation. If you are brushing or flossing and see some blood when you spit, it is important to go to your dentist. Bleeding is the first sign of gingivitis, which is defined as gum disease caused by plaque bacteria lodged between your tooth and gums. When bacteria grow here, they cause inflammation of the gums which can be painful. If left untreated, this bacteria will continue to grow deeper in the space between your teeth and gums and eventually lead to tooth loss.
Some people are more susceptible to gingivitis. Anything that compromises the immune system will leave a person more likely to have gingivitis. There is something known as pregnancy induced gingivitis because it is so common in pregnant women. Many chronic health conditions will lead to gum disease, such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and more. Some medications can also cause gum inflammation and bleeding.
It is important to talk to your dentist if you notice bleeding when you brush or floss and give them a full health history so they can work with you to find the best solution.