Does Gingivitis Cause Bad Breath?
Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums, which happens when a buildup of bacteria and plaque cause the gums to swell and bleed easily. If you notice bleeding when you brush, it could be an early sign you’re experiencing gingivitis. If you let gingivitis symptoms go untreated, the disease can develop into periodontitis, leading to the breakdown of tissue around your teeth as well as possible tooth loss.
What Causes Gingivitis?
The main cause of gingivitis is not following good dental care habits. To maintain healthy gums, you need to brush at least twice a day and floss daily. Also, see your dentist for regular checkups to help prevent and reverse the early stages of gingivitis.
Signs of Gingivitis
Take a close look at your mouth in a mirror. Healthy gums should be firm, pale pink in color, and tightly surrounding your teeth.
Signs of possible gingivitis include:
- Tender gums
- Puffy or swollen gums
- Gaps between teeth and gums or loose teeth
- Gums that are a darker shade of red
- Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
- Ongoing bad taste or bad breath
Treat gingivitis symptoms to prevent more serious health issues. For most people, subgingival bacteria levels are manageable with a return to healthy oral habits. However, if someone has a weakened immune system, gingivitis can be more challenging to handle and reverse. Gingivitis can also cause problems for people who are diabetic.
When gingivitis progresses, it becomes periodontitis.
Bad Breath Is an Early Sign of Gingivitis
A telltale sign of gingivitis is having continuous bad breath. If you aren’t brushing and flossing daily, the oral bacteria that live in your mouth will feed on the protein stuck in your teeth and gums. In the process, they release sulfur gas, or volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs), which smells like stinky breath when it’s exhaled.
Make your dental care a daily priority and schedule regular dental appointments to help prevent gingivitis and bad breath. Consider using a clinically formulated mouthwash like SmartMouth Clinical DDS Activated Oral Rinse to protect your teeth and gums. This zinc-ion-activated rinse can help heal existing gingivitis and prevent future gingivitis and bleeding gums.
Gingivitis can lead to bad breath and eventually to periodontitis, a more serious form of gum disease. Prevent gingivitis by brushing and flossing daily and visiting your dentist for regular checkups.
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Dr. Elizabeth Clary, D.M.D. is a member of the American Dental Association, Missouri Dental Association, Missouri Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, Chicago Dental Society, Greater St. Louis Dental Society, and Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine Alumni Association.