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Dental And Medical Histories To Uncover Bleeding Gum Causes

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Most people experience bleeding gums at some point in their lives. Bleeding gums can often be treated simply by following a strict regimen of oral hygiene and seeing your dentist for regular checkups and teeth cleanings. However, sometimes, bleeding persists despite these interventions, and because of this, further evaluation will be necessary. Here are some things your dentist may ask you when they take your dental and medical histories in an attempt to uncover the cause of your bleeding gums.

Anticoagulants And Dietary Supplements

Your dentist may ask you if you take anticoagulants and dietary supplements because they can affect the way your blood platelets work. For example, aspirin can inhibit the aggregation of your platelets which may result in abnormal bleeding.

Certain dietary supplements such as fish oil, garlic, vitamin E, and magnesium can also cause abnormal bleeding including excessive bleeding from your gums. While your dentist will not advise you to stop taking your medications and supplements, they may advise you to talk to your primary care physician to determine if your medications and supplements may be the culprits behind your bleeding gums.

Once the offending medications and supplements have been discontinued, your gums may stop bleeding. It is important to note that while stopping your medications should eventually stop your gums from bleeding, it may take a few weeks before they are cleared from your system.

Preexisting Conditions

Your dental and medical histories may also include discussing your preexisting conditions. Certain health conditions can cause bleeding gums such as thrombocytopenia (low platelet count), liver disease, bacterial and viral infections, and certain nutritional deficiencies. Vitamin C deficiencies are a common cause of bleeding gums, however, once you have increased your vitamin C intake, either through the foods you eat or from vitamin C supplements, your gums should gradually stop bleeding.

Diabetes is another health condition that can raise your risk for bleeding gums, despite a good regimen of oral care. While bleeding gums and other oral health problems are usually caused in people with poorly managed or long-standing diabetes, they can occur in people who have good blood sugar control and those who are still in the early stages of diabetes.

If your gums bleed even though you properly brush and floss your teeth and see your family dentist regularly, see both your dentist and your primary care doctor. When you work with both of these professionals, the underlying cause of your bleeding gums will be uncovered so that an effective treatment option can be implemented.  

For more info, contact a local dentist