Dentist Questions Gum Disease

What are the most visible signs and symptoms of a gum disease?

We are a family of 4, with 2 adults and 2 children. As a mother the thought of oral infections and diseases scares me. Are there ways to identify a gum disease early? What are the most common signs and symptoms to watch out for as far as oral health of the entire family is concerned?

22 Answers

Bleeding gums, bad breath, and sores in the mouth.
Early signs of gum disease is bleeding when you floss or brush. If the bleeding does not go away after flossing regularly for a week after you notice bleeding, consult a dentist.
Bleeding or red gums when you floss or brush is a major sign. Plaque or tarter accumulation will cause that.
Bleeding during brushing and flossing your teeth is the most visible sign and symptom of a gum disease.
Gum disease is a big umbrella of different manifestations, but the largest number of issues stem from what is called periodontal disease - that is the disease characterized by gum inflammation and potential loss of supporting tissue and bone surrounding the teeth. It is unavoidable if someone is not getting regular professional care at a good dentist, because
there is a limit to what we can remove with toothbrushing and flossing. What happens is that the soft bacterial plaque that forms every day, starts to calcify and turn into tartar which is not removable at home. It must be done by the hygienist under the auspices of the dentist, usually 2-4 times a year, depending on the patient's condition.

It is possible to keep your teeth for your entire life if you combine good professional care on a regular basis with good home care (frequent brushing and daily, effective flossing). Without professional care, even good home care isn't enough to ward off problems over the long haul.
The first symptom of gum disease is bleeding gums with normal flossing and brushing. Healthy tissue will not bleed. If your gums bleed while you floss, it is not because you are flossing too hard. Normal visits, at least two per year, to your dentist will help to keep your oral health in great shape.
Bleeding when brushing is a key sign of gum disease also referred to as Periodontal disease. Bleeding is always a sign of an issue and not healthy. If you brushed your hair and saw blood on the hairbrush would you consider that good or bad? Well, bleeding in the mouth is also not a good sign. Too often, we accept bleeding when we brush as acceptable, and this allows the disease to progress, leading to loss of the bone around the teeth, the teeth getting loose, and possible loss of the teeth. Key is seeing a dentist 2x a year to help identify these problems early and to remove plaque and tartar in areas that the patient is unable to reach with the toothbrush or floss and identify decay early when it can be treated easier and less expensively.


Gregori M. Kurtzman, DDS, MAGD, FPFA, FACD, FADI, DICOI, DADIA
Gum disease is typically a silent disease, you will not experience pain or notice an obvious infection. However, a good indication of gum disease is bleeding while brushing or flossing. Healthy gums will not bleed, so if you are noticing bleeding, there may be gum disease present. Frequent professional teeth cleanings and proper home care is key to preventing gum disease.
Bleeding gums and/or bad breath. Consider routine visits (normally every 6 months) with your dental team (dentist and hygienist).
Great question. The signs of gum disease are subtle in the beginning and often over looked or excused. The initial sign is usually bleeding gums when brush or floss. This is usually diagnosed as gingivitis or inflammation of the gums. Left untreated it progresses and when the individual starts to loose bone it is diagnosed as periodontitis. Bad breath can also be an indicator. The best manner to care for your families dental health is to find a dental home and see the dentist regularly. I sincerely hope my response was of assistance to you.
Thank you.
The most common signs of gum disease are redness and swelling, although any abnormality that doesn’t resolve within 2 weeks should be evaluated by a dental professional. The best way to avoid oral health problems is to maintain regular cleanings and exams— even the most basic dental insurance usually includes these preventative services with no out of pocket cost. As trained professionals with specialized instruments and radiographs they will be able to identify, diagnose and treat to make sure your family stays in good oral health.
First of all, thank you for such a great question! It pleases me that you are concerned about your family’s oral health. Visiting the dentist regularly for check ups and cleanings is the number one way to keep on top of gum and any other dental concerns. Swollen, or red gums, bad breath, bleeding gums while flossing or not, gum discoloration, recession, are all signs of gum and oral issues. Most of these signs and symptoms are treatable if caught early. Your dental office should give you information on home care to suit your individual needs. I hope this answers your question and helps you and your family!
Very simply, red puffy gums is the first sign of gum disease and infection. The gums should always look pink and firm. There should be no bleeding at all when either brushing, flossing, or using any other interdental device. Sure, anyone can accidentally cut the gums, and that would bleed for a few days, but anything more constant could be signs of a potential problem.
The early signs of gum disease for children are red and puffy gum tissue. Children don’t experience severe gum disease unless there are severe issues. They do experience gingivitis which presents as red puffy gums that bleed easy with irritation. Adults do experience gum disease in a similar fashion. Starts with red puffy gums that bleed easy with irritation. Brushing can induce bleeding. It becomes more severe with time and if left untreated.

Dr J
This is a great question one of the first sign and most visible is blessing, you can also see puffy gums, sensitivity, foul odor and inflammation. If X-rays are taken, you might also find loss of attachments to surrounding tissue and bone loss. It is important to understand that this is an infectious disease that is linked to cardiac issues, diabetes, hypertension, and Alzheimer's. It’s also transmitted through the saliva, so if one member is treated, so should the others in the family.
Primarily, I ask my patients if after brushing and flossing, do they see blood in the sink when rinsing. If so, this is an early sign of disease.
When rinsing after brushing, you should see no blood in your sink.
Bleeding, bad breath, loosening of the teeth, teeth looks longer. puffy gum, red color are some of the symptoms, which could affect overall health i.e. heart attack and stroke.
Hello, The early sign of gum disease is bleeding from the gum, redness and puffiness in the gingival papillae between the teeth, but the best and most important prevention is visiting the dentist every six months for exam and cleaning.
I hope that my answer is beneficial to you.
Thank you
Hello! The first signs of gum disease are puffy and red gums. A mouth odor is a possible sign of improper or insufficient tooth brushing. Once the gums bleed to the touch of the toothbrush or if you consistently see a tinge of blood in the expectorate in the sink, you've reached a more intense level of gingivitis. The best practice is to brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day. Please also see a reputable family dentist bi-annually for a thorough cleaning and dental check-up. I would also recommend checking the level of tooth brushing of your children every night while they are very young. Ask your dental hygienist to instruct them on the proper way to brush and floss to develop healthy hygiene habits at a young age. The best quick-check area to check for quality of toothbrushing on your children is at the gum line of their teeth--both top and bottom. Don't forget the sides of the back teeth and tithe tongue side of the teeth! Hope this was helpful!
Good afternoon,

Thank you for your inquiry. The earliest signs of gum disease are bleeding of the gums during brushing or flossing. If this is happening it is important to come for an oral exam and dental cleaning to make sure it is taken care of during this phase and does not progress into the bone.
Please contact the office at any time if you would like to book an appointment with us, we would be happy to help you.

Thank you,
Nina CDA II
Hi,

Gum disease is caused by bacteria in the mouth that adhere to the teeth and grow out of control and the body's immune system can't effectively get rid of it. Signs and symptoms to look for are reddened and swollen gums, gums that bleed easily, build up on the teeth that cannot be wiped or brushed away, and foul odor of the breath. Loose teeth is another sign. The diagnosis of any form of gum disease has to be made by a licensed dental professional, so regular check ups and cleanings are paramount in helping to determine and treat gum disease if it manifests. The earlier you catch it, the better.

Michael I. Farr, DMD, FICOI
There are several facets to your question that your dentist should answer with x-rays in hand in order to be able to make a definitive diagnosis of periodontal disease sometimes known as gum disease and also a clinical examination of your mouth and tissues. This is why the American Dental Association recommend visits twice a year for check-ups to prevent the onset of more complicated issues. These two check-ups per year and proper home hygiene will ensure that your teeth last your entire lifetime.