What your gums could be trying to tell you.

November 1, 2016

The state of your gums can reveal a number of ailments, not just gum disease. There are a number of tell-tale signs that you should look out for.

Gum disease, which can often cause bleeding gums, affects 38% of UK adults, which is little wonder as research from Corsodyl suggests that only 10% of people who notice their gums bleeding visit a dentist.

But your gums could be trying to tell you much more than just the potential signs of gum disease. Here are some of the things you should keep an eye out for:

Swollen gums

If your gums appear swollen or are tender to touch, they could be trying to tell you that you are more at risk of diabetes. Head of Birmingham University’s School of Dentistry, Iain Chapple, suggests that there is a definite link between high blood sugar in diabetes patient and gum problems.

However, if you are able to get your swollen gums under control through a good oral hygiene routine, then you may find that it has a knock on effect on your body’s ability to regulate sugar levels and consequently can have an effect on diabetes. Iain Chapple believes that caring for your gums can be as effective when managing diabetes as giving patients more medications to control it.

Bleeding gums

It is widely acknowledged that bleeding gums can often be a sign of gum disease. But many people ignore blood they spit into the sink in the morning. Don’t.

While this could be an indicator of gum disease, it could point to something more serious. It has been suggested by certain researchers that there is a well-established link between gum disease and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Mouth Ulcers

It’s very easy to dismiss a mouth ulcer as the result of accidentally biting the inside of your mouth, but certain forms of ulcer could be warning you about something else.

Some ulcers may be a sign of coeliac disease, an immune condition where the body has a hypersensitivity to gluten. These ulcers can appear anywhere in the mouth and are often accompanied by bad breath and a metallic taste.

It is important that anyone with these symptoms check for a family history of coeliac disease or gluten sensitivity and visit their GP.

The solution?

To best manage the issues mentioned above you can make sure you brush twice a day for at least two minutes. It’s also important that you clean between your teeth with interdental brushes and floss and rinse regularly with mouthwash (although only rinse your mouth after waiting 20 minutes after brushing as you could otherwise wash away the protective fluoride coating your toothpaste provides for your teeth).


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