The ABCs of Gingivitis

If we aren’t constantly on top of our daily routines, it is easy for our dental health to take a turn for the worse. Not only are dental issues headaches, but they can also be quite costly. One such dental issue easy to develop if we aren’t careful is gingivitis.

Like any dental issue, gingivitis is a very common condition and varies widely in severity as it progresses through the gum disease stages. It is characterized by red, swollen gums that bleed easily when teeth are brushed or flossed. As periodontal disease progresses into later stages and more bone tissue is lost, the teeth may eventually become loose and fall out. Here is a list of reasons you may have developed gingivitis:

  • Smoking or chewing tobacco prevents the gum tissue from healing
  • Crooked, rotated, or overlapping teeth create more areas for plaque and calculus to accumulate and are harder to keep clean
  • Hormonal changes in puberty, pregnancy, and menopause cause the blood vessels in the gums to become more susceptible
  • Cancer and cancer treatment can make a person more susceptible to infection and increase the risk of gum disease
  • Stress impairs the body’s immune response to bacterial invasion
  • Mouth breathing can be harsh on the gums when they aren’t protected by the lips, causing chronic irritation and inflammation
  • Poor nutrition, such as a diet high in sugar and carbohydrates and low in water intake, will increase the formation of plaque
  • Diabetes mellitus impairs circulation and the gums ability to heal
  • Medications such as anti-seizure medications promote gum disease

If you would like to find out more about gingivitis, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit for additional information.