Swollen gums are among the most common byproducts of braces. Fortunately, in most cases, a few habit changes and proper cleaning techniques can help soothe swollen gums. Before solving the issue of swollen gums, you need to know what actually produces the problem.
Keep reading to find out how gums react to braces and how you can soothe the swelling.
Causes of Swollen Gums
Ceramic brackets cemented to your teeth make thorough toothbrushing a challenging task. However, cleaning your teeth is still very important because bacterial plaque can result in gingivitis and periodontal disease. The first stages of which are red, bleeding, and swollen gums.
Apart from cleaning challenges, swollen gums can also result from hyperplasia or hypertrophy. These are conditions in which the gums overgrow because they are overly sensitive to the mere presence of the braces themselves.
Certain bad habits can also worsen swollen and painful gums. For example, pushing your tongue against your teeth, or chewing on your pen or biting your nails or lip when you’re nervous. Kick these habits to ease the pressure on your sore gums!
How to Soothe
The best way to reduce swelling or to avoid swollen gums is by keeping your teeth and braces cleaner. We recommend the following:
- Use an electric toothbrush with a special orthodontic head and a timer. (2 minutes twice a day, or more if gums are really swollen).
- A water flosser that washes out food debris from the gums is also very helpful.
- Use a floss threader to clean around the wires.
- Follow that up with a daily antimicrobial mouthwash. Besides, you can mix a half teaspoon of salt with warm water and rinse your mouth to reduce inflammation.
If you have more specific questions, our Bayside Dental and Orthodontics staff can show you how to use any of these orthodontic tools properly. Call us at 979-330-4113.