The Causes of Gum Pain

Gum pain is very common in adults today. Gum tissue is soft and sensitive and can be easily irritated.

The reasons behind gum pain varies, as does the severity of the underlining problem. Sometimes the gum will heal itself, sometimes if will need dental care. This will all depend on what is causing the pain. There are a number of reasons as to why you are experiencing gum pain. Here are some of the most common reasons:

Gum Disease

Swollen, bleeding, and sore gums are an indicator that you may have gum disease. Gum disease is a build up of bacteria in the gums causing inflammation. When you brush your teeth, your swollen gums tend to bleed.


See your dentist if you think you have gum disease. If caught early, you can restore full health to your gums. However, if it is not treated, it can lead to periodontitis. This is a severe form of gum disease, which can lead to tooth loss.

Improper Brushing

Brushing your teeth too hard can cause damage to your gums. This damage can lead to the bleeding and inflammation of the gums. A gentle, circular movement of your toothbrush over your teeth will be enough to remove plaque. Theres is no need for added force or pressure, as this will lead to further irritation to the gums.


Ensure you are using a soft bristled toothbrush. Softer bristles will clean your teeth and gums effectively, but will not cause irritation and pain. Make sure you are brushing your teeth with the correct technique. Here are some easy to follow steps to ensure you are brushing your teeth correctly.


Cuts and burns from food are a very common cause of gum pain, as it can happen so easily.


Cuts and burns should heal themselves within 10 days, once you ensure not to continue to irritate the area. Make sure all of your food has had time to cool before eating it, and ensure your brushing stoke is gentler than usual. This will give your gums time to heal.

Mouth Ulcers

Mouth ulcers, also know as canker sores, could be the cause of the pain you have in your gums. These small ulcers can appear in your mouth, and on your gums, and can be very painful. They are usually red sores, and sometimes have a white outline. Although the causes of mouth ulcers is unknown, they have been linked to stress, poor diet, and impaired immune system.


Minor ulcers will heal naturally. They can take approximately 10-14 days to heal. To reduce the chance of getting mouth ulcers on a regular basis, it is important to have a healthy, balanced lifestyle. This includes a healthy diet, regular exercise and effective stress management. If mouth ulcers reoccur, persist, or worsen, we recommend a visit to your dentist.


Dental appliances include dentures, mouth guards, and braces. If your dentures and partials are not fitted properly, it can cause discomfort and gum pain. This continuous irritation can cause tissue damage and eventually lead to gum disease.


See your dentist who will be able to adjust your dental appliance to fit your mouth properly, and eliminate the irritation causing the pain in your gums. Other dental products, such as dental wax, may help in certain situations such as a mouthguard or braces, but consult your dentist before using these products.

Tooth Abscess

An infection in your tooth can lead to an abscess, which is a sac of pus found by the root of your tooth. A tooth abscess can cause swollen, sore and bleeding gums. A tooth abscess can occur due to poor dental hygiene, and a high intake of sugary food and drink.


If you think you may have an abscess in your tooth, it is essential that you see your dentist immediately for treatment. To avoid getting a tooth abscess, ensure you are brushing your teeth twice a day, and avoid sugary foods.


Hormone fluctuation can have an impact on your gums. A change in your hormone levels can lead to an increased supply of blood to your gums. This in turn can lead to swelling, and irritation.


If you find that your gums become irritated around hormonal periods such as puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause, speak to your dentist. They will be able to advise on a suitable treatment to manage your gum pain.

Gum health is extremely important and should be included in your daily oral hygiene routine. However, if you do experience gum pain, it is important that you get to the root of the problem before the pain worsens. If you don’t notice an improvement in your pain, it may be time to see your dentist for professional guidance and treatment.

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