Human beings are one of the most high-maintenance beings in the world, thanks to advancements in technology and medicine which have allowed us to take good care of ourselves and prolong our life expectancy.
A very important area when it comes to our physical health is oral hygiene, and although most of us may like to believe that simply brushing our teeth twice or thrice a day is enough to take care of our oral health, that is simply not the case.
While having teeth that are white is a sign of good oral maintenance, it is definitely not the only indicator of oral health. In fact, your gums are probably telling you much more about your health overall. One issue that many people face especially with their gums is swelling, which can have severe root causes that require your immediate attention.
The Reason Why Gums Swell Up
According to Catrise Austin, who is a cosmetic dentist working in NYC, if your gums are swelling up, they are indicating an oral hygiene issue usually due to a buildup of plaque. She explained that plaque forms inside of our mouth on a continuous basis and contains bacteria in the millions.
So, when this bacteria-containing plaque is not effectively removed every day, either through proper brushing as well as after-brush flossing, it generates harmful toxins that go on to cause an infection in the gums, thereby resulting in swelling.
Mostly, the major cause of a plaque buildup is an ineffective tooth cleaning routine. According to experts, you should be brushing your teeth at least twice every day, followed by a cleansing done with floss to get any of the plaque not removed by the brush that can be found in between the teeth.
The goal is to get every last bit of plaque, as any unremoved bits would transform into another substance called tarter, which is then even more difficult to remove and most likely requires professional dental services. In fact, to be on the safe side, Dr. Austin recommends that you pay a visit to the dentist at least twice a year for a thorough cleaning.
But many people, who pay a lot of attention to oral hygiene, still report that their gums are swollen and causing pain. If that’s the case, then perhaps you are dealing with a much bigger issue that requires a professional diagnosis by a dentist.
The Diseases You Should Look Out For
In many cases, the reason why gums swell up is the existence of a condition called gingivitis in the gums. Gingivitis happens as a long term consequence of a tarter buildup, and if you don’t treat it for a considerable period of time, the disease could advance and become periodontitis. At this stage, the consequences are severe, such as tooth loss.
However, sometimes, swollen gums could just be a result of food that is stuck in between the spaces of your teeth. Also, they also indicate other health issues as well, such as a deficiency of vitamins.