What to Do About Bleeding Gums

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You may have noticed your gums bleeding during routine brushing and flossing. This is not normal and may be a sign of serious problems. Bleeding gums are one of the most common signs of periodontitis — gum disease, a bacterial infection of the gum tissue.

Early diagnosis and intervention for gum disease by your dentist can help reduce the risk of complications stemming from advanced stage gum disease, such as tooth loss, deterioration of bone tissue, and receding gums.

Dr. Richard W. Van Gurp of Van Gurp Dentistry at the Arboretum in Charlotte, NC offers routine screenings for gum disease and a full range of periodontal therapy services to treat the progressing stages of gingivitis and periodontitis.

What Causes Bleeding Gums?

There are many reasons you might be experiencing bleeding gums. Below are the most common reasons for bleeding gums:

Gum Disease

Regular brushing and flossing are crucial to maintaining healthy teeth and gums. When you don’t brush or floss your teeth, plaque can build up. These deposits of plaque can harden into tartar which causes inflammation and irritation in the gums, leading to gingivitis.

Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease, and one of the tell-tale signs of this condition is bleeding gums. At this early stage, gum disease is still reversible. Dr. Van Gurp and his team can work with you to reverse the effects of gingivitis with a personalized treatment plan.

However, the longer that bleeding gums are left untreated, the more likely you are to develop full-fledged gum disease. As it progresses, your gums may recede from your teeth. This can allow bacteria to make its way to the roots of the teeth and bone tissue below the gum line. If this occurs, your risk of bone and tooth loss will significantly increase.


Your risk of bleeding gums can increase due to taking certain types of medication. For example, aspirin, birth control, and blood pressure medication can all contribute to bleeding gums.  It is important to let Dr. Van Gurp’s team aware of the medicines you are taking so we can determine if that is contributing to your bleeding gums.


The hormone changes that the body is subjected to when you are pregnant can increase the likelihood of bleeding gums. Research has established that pregnant women are at an increased risk of developing gingivitis.

If you are pregnant and notice any changes in your dental health like bleeding gums, please be sure to contact our office. Dr. Van Gurp can work with you to help improve your dental health and discuss ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy while pregnant.

When Do I Need to See a Dentist for Bleeding Gums?

Routine dental exams, screenings, and professional dental cleanings should be scheduled every 6 months to prevent any minor issues from becoming major ones.

However, if you notice any changes in your dental health, you may want to schedule an appointment sooner than this. Dr. Van Gurp is an experienced dentist in Charlotte, NC who is committed to helping his patients have healthier teeth and gums. 

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Richard W. Van Gurp, you can call (704) 209-9606 or request an appointment online.