• +91(22) 43434545
  • ho@ida.org.in

Gum Disease

Gum and Periodontal Diseases

Swollen gums

Swollen gums defines any condition related to gum disease. Simply stated, if your gums are puffy, inflamed, or enlarged, you can say that your gums are swollen. Under most circumstances, this swelling will involve several of the triangle shaped areas of the gums between the teeth called papillae. The swelling itself is often a result of an accumulation of white blood cells and fluids that are reacting to irritation and inflammation caused by bacteria and plaque along the gum line


Swollen gums are defined as enlarged, swollen, or puffy gums. It is usually obvious when you are suffering from swollen gums, as they will be abnormally large, bulging, or protruding around the teeth.

There is usually not much pain associated with swollen gums, so if you are experiencing discomfort from them you should consult with your dentist immediately if you have sores in the mouth, inflamed gums, receding gums that make your teeth look longer, trench mouth (thrush), spaces developing between teeth, loose teeth, persistent bad taste, pus between the teeth and gum line (pyorrhea), chronic bad breath (halitosis) or change in the way teeth fit together when you bite.

Progression of swollen gums
  • Gums begin to bulge, and bleeding worsen protrude around teeth red from irritation periodontal disease can occur
  • Gums begin to turn darker red from irritation Gums are more tender and bleed easily
  • Swelling continues and teeth can be obscured
  • Swelling

Improve your brushing technique or brush more frequently after eating to not only eliminate bacteria, but the leftover food particles and sugary residues that feed them. It only takes a couple of hours for bacteria to form plaque and only a couple of days for that plaque to harden into tartar. Swollen gums can originate from number sources, the most common of which are infection from a virus or fungus, Gingivitis, poorly fitting dentures, side effect of

Medication, malnutrition, Vitamin C deficiency (scurvy) and bacteria buildup.

Receding Gums

Gum recession occurs when bacteria in the mouth bond and form plaque, this irritates and inflames the gums. As this worsens, the plaque can drive a wedge between the teeth and gums. When this happens, the gum tissue can be eroded away by the waste that these bacteria produce, causing a recessed appearance.

Progression of receding gums
  • Pink Roots visible Tight to teeth Temperature sensitivity Scalloped appearance Tooth loss around each tooth
  • Swollen, Bleeding, Bright red, Tender to touch
  • Gums pull away from teeth, loose teeth, pus between teeth and gums

While receding gums can be a sign of more serious gum conditions on the horizon, they can also be a warning sign for some very serious health issues that many people would never consider to be linked to gum issues. Directly, receding gums can lead to teeth loosening or becoming crooked because of the tissue that holds the gum in place is slowly moving away from the tooth. However, that is not the only danger associated with receding gums. Indirectly, receding gums can act as a gateway to serious conditions such as periodontal disease, which is proven to be linked to much more serious conditions that include heart disease, heart attack, stroke, diabetes, respiratory disease and lastly premature and underweight babies. Taking care of receding gums is very important to maintain your body's overall health.

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums can be a precursor to serious conditions like gingivitis and periodontal disease. If your gums bleed when you brush your teeth, you could be on the way towards some very severe situations that have been proven to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, stroke, HIV and more. If your gums are swollen or bleed, then your entire circulatory system is open to the attack of every form of bacteria that is present in your mouth.


Bleeding gums can be a result of gum disease as previously mentioned, but it can also be a symptom accompanying canker sores or mouth ulcers which have their own causes aside from gum disease. If bleeding occurs due to a sore in the mouth you will likely notice that the gums are sore and these can come as single sores or in multiples. Signs that may indicate gum disease or gingivitis may include the following sore gums, swollen gums, changes in the way teeth fit together , formation of deep pockets between the teeth and gums, gums that bleed during and after brushing teeth , loose, or shifting teeth and receding gums

Progression of bleeding gums
  • Gums begin to darken recede to severe levels from light pink to red when Bleeding occursand there is more bloodBleeding after or during brushing
  • Bleeding occurs on its own,brushing
  • Gums begin to recede and bleed more frequently more regularly
  • Gums not just

Bleeding gums can often lead to gum disease. If there is a passageway for blood to exit your tissue, it makes sense that vice- versa harmful bacteria that are formed in the mouth can gain access to your bloodstream and cause health problems. Some of the dangers that can eventually take place are digestive system disorders, respiratory problems, higher risk for heart attack or stroke, diabetes and pancreatic cancer.CauseBacteria in the mouth can easily grow out of control when proper oral hygiene is not being practiced. When this happens, the bacteria form plaque and eventually tartar. This causes inflammation of the gums, along with swelling and bleeding. Bleeding can also occur as a result of improper flossing. Be careful to allow the floss to slide along the natural curves of the teeth and do not force it.


Teeth are supported by the gums or gingiva. Inflammation of the gums is medically classified as gingivitis but it can lead to more serious gum conditions and should be treated promptly and effectively at the first sign in order to prevent any further complications. That's because gingivitis is an entry level form of periodontal disease, which attacks the gum tissue and eventually works its way to the jaw bone and causes permanent damage including loss of teeth.

Signs of gum disease

Gingivitis is relatively easy to diagnose on your own, as the warning signs are very visibly evident. If you suffer from gingivitis, some of the warning signs are swelling, bleeding gums, bright red or purple appearance to gums, gums that are tender when touched, mouth sores, swollen gums and shiny appearance to gums.

Gingivitis is caused by bacteria buildup in the mouth that goes untreated. The good thing about bacteria buildup in the mouth is that it's easy to treat - if you have the right plan in place. Good teeth- brushing and flossing can reverse the affects of gingivitis. Acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis (ANUG) is an advanced and invasive form of gingivitis that causes sore gums and a whitish membrane on the gums. It requires antibiotics as part of the treatment.


If action is not taken during the early stages of gum disease, it can lead to a number of other, much more serious conditions such as periodontal disease, abscesses, oral infection, loss of teeth, trench mouth (Acute Necrotizing Ulcerative Gingivitis). All of the above mentioned conditions are quite serious in their own right but they can easily be prevented if the first warning signs are noticed.

Progression of gum disease
  • Healthy Gums Pink and healthy in color, no bleeding with pus, no swelling teeth
  • Gingivitis2 Swelling begins - Gums bleed, Red discolouration, Sensitive to touch
  • Periodontitis Gums recede - Teeth loosen
  • Advanced Periodontitis Halitosis Pockets filled Loss of
Some rare forms of gingivitis are:
  • Acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis also called trench mouth or Vincent's infection.
  • Desquamative gingivitis, a disease primarily afflicting postmenopausal women.
  • Gingivostomatisis are painful ulcers on gums and oral mucosa caused by herpes simplex virus.
  • Pericoronitis is inflammation of gums around wisdom tooth.


Periodontitis (also called periodontal or gum disease) is a bacterial infection that destroys the supporting structures that hold your teeth in place. Your gums are the first line of defense against bacterial infection, but once the infection has broken through them it will begin to attack the ligaments and bone that hold the teeth in the mouth. The gums draw back and the roots of the teeth are exposed. It is in this stage of periodontitis that loss of bone due to bacterial erosion can occur, which will then cause the pocket (space between the gum and tooth) to grow deeper and wider. Pus develops between the teeth and the gums or the permanent teeth become loose in their sockets. Left untreated, this disease can lead to costly and painful procedures such as gum grafts, bone grafts, and ultimately tooth loss.Gum disease may start as early as adolescence, though periodontitis is more common after the age of 30. If left untouched it worsens with age. Periodontitis appears and disappears randomly in different areas of the mouth.


Periodontitis is often a silent disease as those who suffer from it rarely experience pain, and may not even be aware that there is a problem. The early stages of gum disease are seldom painful and carry with them very few warning signs. Some of the early warnings to look for are slight bleeding while brushing, softening of the gums and discolouration of the gums (darker red/irritated in appearance rather than a light, healthy pink). As the disease progresses, more noticeable signs may become more predominant. Some examples of these more serious indicators are swollen gums, sores in the mouth, inflamed gums, bright red or purple gums, receding gums that make your teeth look longer, spaces developing between teeth, loose teeth, pus between the teeth and gum line (pyorrhea), chronic bad breath (halitosis) and tender gums when touched.


It is estimated that 85% of the population has some form of gum disease.

It has been a long held belief that periodontal disease was just a dental disease, affecting only the teeth and gums. While it's true that periodontal disease may originate in the mouth, it is now known that periodontitis is a very serious disease, affecting the entire body and increasing risk of numerous other adverse health effects including increased risk of heart attack by as much as 25%, pancreatic cancer, increased risk of stroke by a factor of 10, problems controlling both type I and type II diabetes, underweight newborns, respiratory disease and digestive disorders. Periodontitis is not something to be taken lightly. If you have it, you need to do all you can to get rid of it.


The overgrowth of bacteria is the main cause of periodontal disease. One drop of human saliva can easily contain 50 to 100 million bacteria and a diseased mouth can contain bacteria into the billions. As bacteria grow, they accumulate (both dead and alive) and form a sticky, nearly invisible layer called plaqueAs plaque grows, it appears as a whitish- gray colour. Usually, the formation of this plaque is along the teeth and gum line. If this plaque continues to grow unchecked, it becomes calcified and turns into tartar (also known as calculus). Calculus builds a wedge between the tooth and gum line, and can cause openings called pocketsPockets are measured by how deep they are from the gum line. Stage 1 periodontitis (called gingivitis) is 2-3mm deep, stage 2 periodontitis is 4-5mm, and stage 3 periodontitis is 6mm and deeper.

As the gum tissue comes into contact with the spreading plaque and calculus, the infection intensifies. Swelling and redness/irritation begin, the gums become weakened, and bleeding can occur. Once bleeding has started, the bacteria get an additional source of food and can begin to multiply at an alarming rate.

As bacteria continue to multiply, they eat. The waste that is produced by bacteria is highly acidic. So much so in fact that it can eat right through tooth enamel to the dentin and cause cavities. These bacteria like to hide between the teeth, on the back of the tongue and especially in the pockets under the gum line where normal brushing will not disturb it. The acidic waste produced by these bacteria will eat away at the ligaments and bone of the tooth and gum tissue. Eventually, this will cause the tooth to become weaker and possibly even loose. This waste can also eat away at gum tissue and cause them to recede or pull away from your teeth. If not treated, tooth loss is inevitable and at that point you are exposed to a whole host of other diseases that are now linked to periodontitis.

Besides the overgrowth of bad bacteria, the following factors may also affect the health of your gums smoking/tobacco use, medications, genetics, clenching or grinding your teeth, pregnancy/puberty, diabetes, hormonal changes in women, poor nutrition and stress.

Periodontitis occurs in several forms. The most common is chronic adult periodontitis. One rare type advances rapidly and doesn't respond to treatment. Two other forms of periodontitis are pre- pubertal and juvenile which affects children and teenagers. These are linked to systemic disorder or family history of periodontal disease.

Treatment can be Scaling and Root Planing

This is a procedure performed by a dentist to keep your gums healthy and firm. Scaling involves removal of infected deposits like plaque, calculus and stains from the surface of teeth. While root planing removes roughened cementum and surface dentin that is impregnated with calculus, microorganisms and their toxins.

The procedures are also known as conventional periodontal therapy or non-surgical periodontal therapy. The instruments used include ultrasonic instruments, periodontal scalers and curettes.

Cookies help us to deliver our services. By using our services you agree to our use of cookies.
Chat with Us
Indian Dental Association
  • Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. 20:18
  • Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. 20:18
  • Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. 20:18
  • Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. 20:18