Gingivitis refers to the inflammation of the gum tissue and it is a non-destructive disease around the teeth. If not treated, this condition usually leads to periodontitis, which involves tissue destruction and bone resorption in the teeth. As a result, the person may suffer from tooth loss.
Causes and Epidemiology
Bacterial infection is one of the lead causes of gingivitis. According to Health Line, infection happens when food gets trapped in the gum’s sulcus, the small space formed by the gum edges attached to the teeth. Bacteria consume the food particles inside the mouth and a thin film of bacteria on the teeth surface is called plaque. When it progresses, it hardens and it is called tartar. Infection happens when the plaque stretches below the gum line.
Gingivitis can cause gum separation from the teeth, which can place injury to the soft tissue and the bone that supports the teeth. As a result, the tooth may become loose and destabilized. Also, the progress of infection may lead to tooth loss.
According to EMedicine, gingivitis starts in early childhood and nine to 17 percent of children aged three to 11 years in the United Sates have the condition. As per the publication, gingivitis rises to 70 to 90 percent during puberty, which may be associated with a teenager’s lifestyle. To add, chronic gingivitis is noted to conclude with periodontal disease and chronic periodontitis stands as the most prevalent chronic inflammatory condition in the elderly.
Signs and Symptoms
Gingivitis presents a number of signs and symptoms. According to Medical News Today, the signs and symptoms of gingivitis include bright red or purple-colored gums, which are tender and painful to touch. The gums also bleed easily when brushing the teeth or flossing. Due to inflammation, the gums may also recede and due to the disease process, halitosis or bad breath may be notable.
Along with medical treatment, home remedies are also available to manage gingivitis.
The use of salt as mouth cleanser is one remedy for the condition. According to Rapid Home Remedies, salt can be the first the most effective treatment for gingivitis, as it changes the pH of the oral environment, making it hard for bacteria to thrive. Also, salt has supreme anti-microbial properties, along with its ability to sooth the mucus membranes. This way, salt is able to reduce gum swelling. To prepare, the person just adds salt to lukewarm water and mixes them well. Then, he washes his mouth with the resulting mixture. This is done for two to three times a day. An alternative is to make a homemade paste with salt and oil. The ingredients are half teaspoon of salt, few drops of mustard oil, and a cup of warm water. To prepare, the salt is taken and few drops of mustard oil are added, enough to create a paste-like consistency. Then, the person rubs his gums gently with the mixture for about one to two minutes. After that, he washes his mouth with warm water. The process is done twice or thrice a day.
Turmeric is another option when it comes to home remedies for gingivitis. According to Top 10 Home Remedies, turmeric contains curcumin, which acts as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. As per the publication, these properties enable curcumin to reduce plaque, swelling, pain, and inflammation in the gums. To prepare, the person combines a teaspoon of turmeric powder and half teaspoon of each salt and mustard oil to form a paste, which is applied on the teeth and gums. As an alternative, half teaspoon of turmeric powder is mixed with little water of vitamin E oil to make a gum pack. It is applied to the gums and is left for ten minutes before rinsing with warm water.
Gingivitis is not as severe as cancer. However, it is best to seek medical consult from a health professional to prevent infection and the progress of the condition, along with proper assessment, planning, and implementation.