Cosmetic Dentistry|Dental Care|Gum Disease

Why Do My Gums Bleed?

Bleeding Gums Treatment

When you think about dentistry, people mainly think teeth. That by going to the dentist every 6 months you are having your teeth checked to make sure they are healthy, but dentists actually examine everything in your mouth including your tongue, soft tissues and gums.

Just like your teeth, if we don’t take care of our gums problems can start to happen. The first sign there may be a problem is bleeding gums. Although it may not be something serious there are a few reasons why your gums may be bleeding:

  • Brushing too hard with a hard bristle brush
  • Improper flossing
  • Gum Disease / Gum Infection
  • Pregnancy
  • Ill-fitting dentures / orthodontic appliances
  • Blood thinning medication
  • Blood Disorder
  • Leukaemia
  • Scurvy

Hard, Vigorous Brushing

If you have a hard toothbrush and brush quite vigorously then you will find that your gums will bleed. By brushing hard you feel that you are giving your teeth a thorough clean but in fact you are damaging them. Gums are delicate and by doing this you will cause the gums to become red and swollen. You may also damage the enamel on your teeth.


If you notice a little bleeding in areas then you may have Gingivitis. This is inflammation of the gums. It may not be painful but you might notice inflammation in areas. If caught early it can be reversed and the areas healed. Gingivitis is the less severe form of Gum Disease.

Gum Disease

Another reason your gums may be bleeding is because you may have Gum Disease. Gum Disease affects 3 out of 4 adults over the age of 35. It is the main cause of tooth loss and can affect anyone at any age.

Gum Disease is caused by not cleaning your teeth and gums properly. Plaque, formed by bacteria in your mouth and food particles, forms on the teeth around the gum line. If not removed this irritates the gums making them bleed and become red and inflamed. Left even longer the gums become even more inflamed making them pull away from the teeth eventually making your teeth become loose. This is called Periodontitis.

Gum problems are completely avoidable providing you see your dentist and hygienist regularly and care for your teeth and gums properly at home. If you are at risk of developing Gum Disease your Hygienist may decide to see you 3-4 times a year instead of twice a year. They will advise you of the correct way to care for your teeth and gums.

The toothbrush most dentists and hygienists recommend is a small headed, soft bristle brush. The small head allows you to reach difficult areas, whilst the soft bristles are gentle on your gums but still remove plaque and debris effectively.

Electric brushes are also recommended. These brushes are particularly good for patients who have difficulty brushing or have limited movement to their arm/wrist. Many also have a timer which informs you when you have brushed your teeth for the recommended 2 minutes.

All dentists advise that you brush your teeth twice a day and use floss or interdental brushes at least once a day too. Brush your teeth for 2 minutes. If you are using a manual brush mentally section your mouth into 4 and brush for 30 seconds in each section. Never brush your teeth directly after eating as this can damage your teeth. Eating fruit, drinking fizzy drinks, wine and other foods containing acid makes tooth enamel soft, and brushing after eating can wear the enamel away.

You should change your toothbrush every 3 months or if the brush starts to show signs of wear, whichever is first. You should never share toothbrushes. The bristles harbour bacteria and you can spread infections.


Being pregnant can also make your gums bleed. This is because of all the hormones flooding your body to assist with your pregnancy. The lining of your mouth and nose are affected and you also have a higher volume of blood pumping around your system. These reasons make bleeding from your mouth highly likely.

Less Common Reasons

Bleeding from the gums can also be a sign that something more serious could be wrong. You should visit your Dentist if you notice any unusual or prolonged bleeding from your gums to rule out any dental related problems. You should then see your Doctor who will then do the appropriate tests to determine the cause.

Perfect Smile Spa has a ‘prevention is better than cure’ philosophy. By giving you the correct treatment and advice we believe most treatment is avoidable.

We will work closely with you at our dental clinic in Essex, guiding you all the way allowing you to sustain a healthy, beautiful smile.

This post is by Dr Jas Sagoo who is the principle dentist in Essex at Perfect Smile Spa.Why Do My Gums Bleed? was last modified: July 2nd, 2018 by Dr Jas Sagoo