If you’ve ever experienced bleeding gums while flossing or after a routine cleaning at the dentist, you aren’t alone. And while this is common, with around 90% of people experiencing bleeding gums from time to time, it’s also a sign of gum inflammation. When bleeding and inflammation become chronic, it can be a sign of gingivitis.

Gingivitis on its own can result in numerous problems, including receding gums, abscesses, loose teeth, and even lost teeth. And when gingivitis progresses without treatment, it can turn into periodontal disease, which is a more severe version of gingivitis. People with periodontal disease have inflammation that extends beyond their gums into the hard tissues surrounding them, putting them even further at risk of serious oral health problems.

Skipping Cleanings and Checkups Puts You at Risk

Having chronically inflamed gums that bleed when you floss or accidentally brush too hard should always be a red flag and a sign that you need to get to a dentist pronto. But many people ignore this warning sign, especially if it comes and goes. To make matters worse, many people skip their bi-annual dental checkups, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And when people aren’t visiting the dentist, they may be less likely to keep up good oral hygiene at home. That means they may start brushing once a day instead of twice, eating more candy and sugar-laden foods, and cutting back on flossing.

Age, Medication Usage, and Tobacco Increase the Risk

Additional risk factors for periodontal disease include age—older people are more likely to develop it—taking medications that decrease saliva production, and using both cigarettes and smokeless tobacco.

Without regular dental visits to keep them up to date on their oral health and reinforcement from their dentists on the importance of good mouth hygiene, people can quickly develop or further fall into bad habits that can quickly turn mild gum inflammation into full-blown periodontal disease.

We’ll Help You Get Your Oral Health Back on Track

Gingivitis and periodontal disease can sneak up on you. The best way to reduce your risks is to get a cleaning and checkup, and our dental experts are here to help.

Request a dental appointment today on our website. It’s never too late to regain control of your oral health or treat early signs of gum disease.