Most people can experience the problem of bleeding gums. Generally, this problem is realized when brushing teeth. However, maybe not everyone knows what exactly is the cause of bleeding gums and how to handle them properly.
Several things may cause bleeding gums. The most common cause is the presence of plaque and tartar (calculus) that attach to the surface of the tooth. Our teeth are coated with a slippery transparent layer called the pellicle. The pellicle colonized by bacteria is called plaque. Furthermore, if it is not cleaned, the plaque can be mineralized (hardening) so that it forms tartar attached to the surface of the tooth. Usually, tartar is found on the neck of the tooth.
The tartar is not only attached to the surface of the visible tooth (located above the gum line) but can also be connected to the surface of the tooth covered by the gums. On the surface of the tartar, there is also usually a bacterial colony. This bacterial colony of plaque and tartar results in damage to the supporting tissues of the teeth, which starts from the gingiva (the part of the gum that we can see). This condition is called gingivitis (inflammation of the gums). Because there is inflammation, the gums bleed easily when subjected to mechanical trauma, such as toothbrushes or toothpicks. So, bleeding gums are an early sign of gum damage.
If it is not immediately treated, the tartar can continue to grow so that the attachment of the gums to the surface of the tooth becomes loose and forms a bag of gum (called a periodontal pocket). This condition is accompanied by gum bleeding and damage to the bone supporting the teeth. As a result, if the teeth are not immediately treated the teeth will shake and eventually date. This condition is called periodontitis.
Because the cause is a bacterial colony of plaque and tartar, the solution to this problem is by cleaning up plaque and tartar. Plaque can be cleaned by brushing your teeth regularly and correctly. The frequency of brushing your teeth at least twice every day, morning after breakfast and night before bed. The direction of brushing your teeth is from the gums towards the teeth. Brushing teeth in a horizontal direction is not justified because it will cause abrasion of the neck of the teeth and gingival recession (the maxillary gums appear to rise, the lower jaw gum seems to fall, so that the root surface of the tooth is visible).
Tartar cannot be cleaned by brushing teeth. So if there is a tartar, it is necessary to come to the dentist to do scaling (tartar cleaning). Then the dentist will see to what extent the tooth supporting tissue damage has occurred. If only gingivitis occurs, then scaling is usually sufficient. However, if periodontitis has occurred, further periodontal treatment will be carried out. We recommend that you come to the dentist every six months to do a thorough examination so that problems can be addressed early.
In addition to tartar and plaque, gum bleeding is also associated with several diseases, including vitamin C deficiency and blood disorders. Vitamin C deficiency occurs in people who do not eat vegetables or fruit for a long time. Gums in patients with vitamin C deficiency become swollen, purplish and bleeding. This condition of vitamin C deficiency is called Scurvy. How to treat it is to provide vitamin C.
Blood disorders that are usually associated with gum bleeding are leukemia and thrombocytopenia. Leukemia is the malignancy of white blood cells while thrombocytopenia is a condition in which there is a reduction in the number of platelets in the blood. In patients with leukemia, the gums are infiltrated by malignant white blood cells. Clinically the gums appear enlarged. Because in leukemia thrombocytopenia generally also occurs, the gums with people with leukemia also easily bleed. Platelets are one of the blood elements needed for blood clotting. If the number drops below the normal limit, the possibility of bleeding is greater. Thrombocytopenia can be a stand-alone disease or part of another illness, such as dengue fever. So if you find bleeding gums accompanied by other symptoms such as body fatigue, fever, weight loss, night sweats and others you should immediately come to the doctor for further examination.