The blood on your toothbrush bristles and in your sink after your thorough cleaning of your teeth is something you should not ignore! Bleeding gums can happen for reasons.

Here are the reasons why your gums are bleeding and what to do about it:

Smoking. If you smoke, then you are at a higher risk of experiencing bleeding gums. Smoking tends to cause periodontal disease. The unhealthy substance especially nicotine in cigarettes cause plaque formation that when untreated could eventually lead to periodontitis.

Poor Nutrition. When you don’t eat enough vegetables and fruits and other nutritious food, you could be setting your gums up for inflammation. You don’t have to ban sweets totally off your diet; you just need to commit to keeping your sugar intake to a minimum. Thus a balanced diet is not only good for the body, but it also keeps your gums healthy and prevents oral diseases as well.

Improper brushing and flossing.  Your dentist recommends soft bristles for a toothbrush and to avoid pressing the floss against your teeth too hard to prevent irritating your gums. It is recommended that people brush their teeth with a fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day – morning and bedtime and floss daily to prevent plaque formation.

Hormonal Imbalance. If you’re a female, hormonal changes during menstruation and pregnancy can also increase the chances of having bleeding gums.  Women may experience natural hormonal gingivitis that is correlated with a monthly cycle or a hormonal change during pregnancy.

Medications. If you’re on certain medications, it can also raise your risk for bleeding gums. Medications for blood pressure may cause gum inflammation and bleeding while some can leave you with a dry mouth. Pain relievers, like Aspirin, can also cause gum bleeding as its mechanism is to thin the blood. There are also over 400 medications that can affect the amount of salivary flow in the mouth, and that includes antihistamines, sedatives, anti-depressants, and anti-psychotics. Always talk to your dentist if you think a medication is causing side effects, even if they seem mild.

If changing your oral care habits and maintaining a healthy diet does not help to stop your gums from bleeding, you should visit your Newport Beach dentist like F. Anthony Rich, DDS for him to give you a thorough assessment of your oral health.