Why Gums Hurt: A Case of Hygiene

Gum Pain: Reasons and Tips

Many patients ask why their gums hurt when they’re brushing their teeth. They feel some degree of discomfort and/or pain in their gums while doing their oral hygiene routine. In some instances, they have never yet experienced this reaction before. If it happens to you, should you be alarmed?

Sometimes our gums hurt and the most common cause for this is a chronic inflammation of the gums. This is a result of a chronic infection of the gums. Know that after eating, it only takes about 12 to 24 hours for plaques to form. Plaques are sites for bacteria to grow and multiply, and we know that there are hundreds of different bacteria residing in our oral cavities. If we do not brush our teeth regularly and properly, bacteria can multiply and result in infection. The risk is higher if food intake is mostly sugary. In other words, now, gums hurt usually due to poor oral hygiene.

Gums also hurt if you use hard bristle toothbrushes; likewise, if you use harsh brush strokes. These habits can scrape the soft gum tissue as well as erode enamel. Similarly, old brushes with worn out bristles do not clean the teeth properly and are a risk factor for causing infection.

Gums hurt, too, due to the loss of dental enamel, that first outer layer of teeth. Strong as it is, constant exposure to acid, for example, can weaken it and cause it to become sensitive. Enamel loss can be brought about by high starch and sugary food and drinks, energy drinks, drugs like tetracycline, reflux disease, and conditions like teeth grinding. They can all result to chronic inflammation and infection of the gums.

Teeth and gum problems cause pain and increased sensitivity of the gums, and in many cases, tooth loss. They can also cause systemic infections, like heart problems, hence, should not be ignored.

So, what must one do when gums hurt? Improve hygiene of the teeth and gums. Brush teeth every morning and before going to bed at night or after every meal. If not, at least have a mouth rinse after meals or drink lots of water after drinking soda. Use also an antiseptic mouthwash. Change your hard bristle toothbrush to a soft one and replace as soon as the bristles start to wear out. Floss daily. Avoid taking sugary foods and drinks. Lastly, have a professional cleaning regularly, which also means you will be visiting your dentist and have an oral examination.

Treating Gums in Bellevue

Do you experience pain or discomfort in your gums? Learn what’s wrong by visiting our Bellevue dentist, Dr. Yu, here at Overlake Dental.