Whether you’re brushing with an electric toothbrush, manual toothbrush, using an interdental brush, flossing or anything else — you shouldn’t be in pain. If you are, there’s likely a simple explanation that can be fixed by either you or your dentist.
28 October 2022
The process of cleaning your teeth shouldn’t hurt. Whether you’re brushing with an electric toothbrush, manual toothbrush, using an interdental brush, flossing or anything else — you shouldn’t be in pain. If you are, there’s likely a simple explanation that can be fixed by either you or your dentist.
Below, we look at the most common causes of gum pain when you’re brushing your teeth.
Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard
It’s natural to want to put a bit of elbow grease into cleaning. The harder you work the better you clean, right? Well, that’s not the case when it comes to your teeth. Brushing too aggressively can cause a whole range of problems that includes enamel erosion, premature wear and gum irritation.
Using too hard a toothbrush (or electric toothbrush head) can also contribute to this issue, damaging your gums and even causing them to bleed. We recommend always using a soft head and a gentle brushing motion. It’s important to remember you’re only trying to clean a thin film of plaque off your teeth — not sand down a plank of wood!
Food, Drinks And Cigarettes
Just as the wrong food and drinks can irritate our skin, they can also irritate our gums. These usually tend to be foods that are high in sugar and acid, causing a reddening and swelling of our gums accompanied by increased sensitivity. If you think that this might be the cause of your persistent gum pain, a professional food allergist will be able to offer your more guidance about which foods in particular to avoid.
Additionally, it should come as no surprise that consuming tobacco can also have very severe impacts on your oral health. Smoking cigarettes, cigars and even e-cigarettes (vapes) containing tobacco can lead to an eventual breakdown of healthy gum tissue, resulting in pain, bleeding, increased sensitivity and worse.
Periods Of Hormonal Fluctuation
Our hormones control a lot of things within our bodies. When their levels start to change, we often notice some unusual biological side effects. Phases of life like puberty, menstruation, pregnancy and menopause can all cause hormonal changes which, oddly enough, can affect our gums. Whether it’s swelling, soreness or bleeding, this sort of gum pain has little to do with our oral health, and is luckily only temporary.
General Oral Health
If the gum pain you experience while brushing is localised to a specific area, it may be due to an issue with a specific tooth. Oral abscesses (areas filled with pus) will often form if there’s an infected root or damaged tissue beneath a tooth. This creates a painful, swollen area of the gum and usually requires a root canal treatment to fix.
Mouth ulcers (canker sores) are also a contributor to poor gum health. Often disappearing after a week or two, these little sores can make brushing your teeth a nightmare.
Do I Have Gum Disease?
Finally, the major — and most serious — cause of pain when brushing your teeth is gum disease.
This disease comes in two forms: gingivitis and periodontitis.
A result of poor oral hygiene, the effects of gingivitis can be reversed with the proper care and guidance. Periodontitis, however, is a much more severe form of the disease that requires dental intervention. Both of these conditions can cause red, swollen, sensitive gums that will hurt and bleed while brushing your teeth. Without intervention, the natural progression of gum disease can lead to the breakdown of the gums themselves, resulting in the eventual loss of teeth.
Gum Care At Innovative Dental
If gum pain while brushing your teeth seems to be something that just won’t go away, visit Innovative Dental Moonee Ponds today. With expert care and guidance, our team will be able to determine the cause of your pain and the best course of action to fix it!
We’ll get your gums on the road to recovery. Make your appointment online today.