5 Steps to Reduce Gum Irritation

When your gums are sore, brushing your teeth and even eating can be a painful experience. You may notice blood when you spit toothpaste into the sink. Sore gums can be a symptom of gum disease, so it is important to book an appointment with your dentist to find out what is causing the irritation. In the meantime, here are five things you can do to soothe your irritated gums so you can eat and maintain your dental hygiene.

1. Use a Soothing Mouthwash

Some mouthwashes are specifically designed to reduce swelling in the gums and fight the bacteria that cause gum disease. Next time you are at the pharmacy or the grocery store, look for a mouth rinse that offers gum health as one of its primary benefits. Using mouthwash every day can help to reduce swelling and keep your mouth clean.

2. Switch Your Toothpaste

The medical term for swollen, irritated gums is gingivitis. If you suffer from this relatively common oral health problem, using an anti-gingivitis toothpaste might help. This special kind of toothpaste contains anti-bacterial ingredients that kill the bacteria that drive the development of gum disease. You can use anti-gingivitis toothpaste every day to keep your gums healthy.

3. Change Your Toothbrush

It is very important to keep brushing your teeth every morning and evening even if your gums hurt. To reduce the pain, swap your regular toothbrush for one with ultra-soft bristles. If you use an electric toothbrush, try using the sensitive mode to give your gums a break. Whatever kind of toothbrush you use, try to avoid applying too much pressure when you brush. You only need a light sweeping motion to clean plaque from your teeth.

4. Numb Your Gums

Mouth numbing gels that contain benzocaine can block pain signals coming from oral tissues, allowing you to focus on your daily tasks without the distraction of sore gums. These gels only block the pain rather than eliminating its source, so you shouldn't rely on them as a long-term solution, but they are useful if you need immediate relief.

5. Choose Foods Carefully

When your gums are sore, it pays to be picky about what you eat. Spicy foods and foods served at too high a temperature can make your gums burn, while hard, brittle foods like nuts or hard candies can splinter and jab into your gums. Take a break from these foods and soothe your gums by eating cold soup, yoghurt, or smoothies until they feel better.