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Dental Health

Itchy Gums? You’re Not Alone

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Itchy gums is a growing epidemic. If you feel your gums have a strange, itching sensation, you’re not alone. This complaint is becoming more common.

There are a variety of things that can result in gum discomfort. Some causes could be natural changes in the body, underlying health related issues, or injury to the mouth. It can be hard to know what you are dealing with when you begin to experience itching in your gums, but the way your symptom presents may provide a clue. For example:

  • Itching that also affects the roof of the mouth may be an allergy.
  • Red, irritated, or inflamed gums could point to the first stages of gum disease.
  • Pain, aching, or swelling could be the result of an injury or tooth abscess.

What Causes Itchy Gums?
Poor dental hygiene is the underlying reason for many cases of itchy gums, because the teeth and gums are not kept clean enough causing plaque buildup. Plaque is a sticky film found on teeth, which contains bacteria that breaks down some of the simple sugars found in food and drink. If plaque builds up and stays on teeth for long enough, it can begin to harden into tartar, which cannot be removed with floss or a toothbrush. Tartar below the gum line can cause gums to become irritated and inflamed, which will cause them to itch.

If hygiene isn’t to blame, consider whether you’ve had a recent injury. You may experience itching as cuts begin to heal. A dry mouth can also cause itchy gums. The body should naturally produce enough saliva to keep the mouth moist, but certain medical conditions, medications, or foods may prevent this, resulting in a feeling of dryness.

How to Relieve Itchy Gums?
Controlling inflammation and infection is critical to stopping gum itch. If your itchiness is caused by dry mouth, the solution could be as simple as just drinking plenty of water throughout the day. You can also:

  • Brush teeth twice daily, floss, and use an antibacterial mouthwash.
  • Rinse your mouth with a saltwater solution.
  • Take an over-the-counter antihistamine if itching has been caused by an allergy.

If the itchy gums continue after you tried these methods of relief, consult with your Dental Care Center dentist right away. Contact us for an appointment so we can figure out what’s causing your itchy gums.