Why Do My Gums
Bleed When I Floss?

Why Do My Gums
Bleed When I Floss?

Why Do My Gums
Bleed When I Floss?

Why Do My Gums
Bleed When I Floss?

May 27, 2018

Have your gums ever bled when you were flossing? Here are some reasons why that may be and what you can do to stop your gums from bleeding when you floss.

Why Your Gums May Bleed When Flossing

If your gums bleed when you floss, this most likely means that you actually need to floss more often! Irritated gums bleed due to plaque buildup between your teeth and under your gumline. Plaque is a sticky layer of bacteria that is constantly forming on your teeth, and if you don’t remove it by proper brushing and flossing, it can turn into tartar (a hard layer that must be removed by a dental professional). Tartar will contribute to gingivitis, so it’s important to remove plaque before it hardens. Bleeding gums may also indicate a dietary deficiency of niacin, or vitamin A, C, or K.

How to Prevent Your Gums From Bleeding

To battle bleeding gums, step up your oral care habits and check to make sure you’re using your dental tools correctly:

  • Address any possible vitamin deficiencies

  • Brush twice a day for two minutes each time using a fluoride toothpaste

  • Use a toothbrush with soft bristles to clean your teeth and gums without irritating them

  • Floss every day to remove plaque from between your teeth, even if you bleed

  • Use firm but gentle pressure when brushing and flossing (if you’re brushing or flossing too hard, you could be exacerbating that irritation rather than improving it)

  • Come see us every six months for a dental checkup and cleaning

Maintain a Mouth-Healthy Diet

A healthy diet is also important in keeping your gums healthy. Food particles and residue from sugary foods and drinks can get stuck between your teeth, causing a buildup of plaque that may irritate your gums and eventually lead to more serious gum disease and eventual tooth loss.

  • Foods laden with sugar and simple carbohydrates, like candy, chips, and white bread, that will increase your risk for tooth decay should be eaten in moderation.

  • Limit your intake of drinks such as soda, coffee, and alcohol, which contain acids that will wear away the enamel on your teeth.

  • Instead of processed foods filled with sugar, reach for natural, raw fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, and celery, which can stimulate your gums with their fibrous texture and actually wash away acids in your mouth with their water content.

  • Always drink water during and after you eat or drink anything to wash away food particles and residue left in your mouth.

Come Visit Our Friendly Team!

Follow these recommendations to help stop your gums from bleeding. However, you should also come in to see us so Dr. Henley can determine the exact cause of your dental discomfort. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment!