Healthy gums are pale pink and firm. If yours are red and swollen, you probably have gum disease or gingivitis. One of the commonest signs is blood on the toothbrush after brushing and often there is a bad breath (halitosis) as well. Flossing may cause bleeding.
What’s the Cause
The accumulation of the surface film of dental plaque (a sticky layer of germs) starts the inflammatory process. Tiny ulcers appear which penetrates the soft gum tissues and cause your immune system to respond. Large numbers of white blood cells appear on the scene to fight the bacterial invasion and the gum begin to swell.
However if left untreated, it gradually progresses results in the destruction of the tooth attachment and bones around your teeth (periodontitis). This causes the affected teeth to become loose and in some cases move.
The depth of the space between the neck of the tooth (where the tooth meets the gum) and the gum indicates if you have gum problem or not. these spaces are known as ‘pockets’. Healthy gums have small pocket measurements (2 – 3mm), but gum diseases, these pockets can be very deep (5-10mm or more and means) and means that special gum tratment is needed. The measurement taken by your dentist or hygienist indicates how severe any existing gum problem is.