Dentist Questions Bleeding Gums

Why does only one tooth area bleed when I floss?

I'd say about once every couple of weeks, my back top right tooth area bleeds very much when I floss. It takes a minute or so to stop. Why does this happen just in the one area?

20 Answers

Because that area is infected and inflamed.
Great question! You may have an open contact or irregular shaped contact that is allowing food to get trapped between your teeth. Recession or bone loss around teeth can also cause spaces for food to collect. Often, the tissue is inflamed in these areas. There are also other causes and an examination by your dentist is advisable to help you maintain normal oral health. Gingival bleeding is a sign of inflammation, and should never be ignored.

Dr. Joe Ferraro
Gums bleed when they are inflamed. You should have a Dentist evaluate the area an followup with recommended treatment before the problem gets worse.
Do you get food stuck in this area a lot? It's hard to say without a full exam but most of the time teeth bleed during flossing because there's something in there that is irritating the gums i.e. food. This can be fixed in a number of ways - come in for an exam so we can get to the root of the problem!
This occurs due to a localized infection or inflammation in the area. This can be due to restorations, a good trap, and sometimes just happens. As long as you continue good oral hygiene practice and stay up with your normal cleanings I do t believe you have anything to worry about.
There is definitely some gum inflammation around the tooth. There are several reasons for gum inflammation. I suggest you see your dentist to get it evaluated.
Does food get packed in between the teeth? Is the tooth in alignment with the other teeth? Can you floss between the teeth? Evaluate these conditions then make an appointment for the dentist to fully evaluate the condition.
You probably have an inflamed or infected area of gum disease. But other diagnoses are also possible. Not possible to diagnose properly without being seen in person at the dental office.
If you have one tooth area bleeding, most likely you have hardened tartar deposits hiding below the gumline. You will need to have a professional hygienist or dentist remove these deposits. Note that not only is blood leaking from these ulcers, but germs are penetrating the other direction and if left untreated will eventually lead to breakdown of the bone and other supporting tissues.
This is likely due to an isolated "pocket" where the gums are chronically irritated, possibly due to a food trap or subgingival calculus. I'd recommend going to the dentist for a limited exam.
Sometimes, if you have an area where food traps this is an irritant, we can repair this with a filling to tighten the contact between the teeth. There could be a filling that is not smooth, or if there is a crown, it could have cement under the gum line. Decay can also bring bacteria to the area, and gum disease can cause bleeding.
If you still have a wisdom tooth in this area the condition may be known as pericoronitis or inflammation of the tissue surrounding an impacted wisdom tooth and the associated loss of bone due to its poor approximation to the tooth that is adjacent to it. This creates a pocket of sepsis. This deep-pocket is usually the root of your problem and should be deep cleaned by the dentist with a special scalar.
Not certain, but likely there is local irritation, possibly even localized infection. You should have this evaluated by a licensed dentist.
One possibility is that you have a periodontal pocket (loss of bone) in that area and food getting stuck there can cause inflammation and bleeding.
Each tooth in the mouth has 6 sites that are measured for periodontal (gum) disease. If you have been diagnosed w/ periodontal disease 1 tooth may be more affected then others.
The reason why you bleed in the one area is because that tooth or area may be more affected through use, wear and tear, existing restorations, etc. Flossing the area may cause initial irritation and bleeding, but doing so consistently day after day even twice a day should lead to a reduction in bleeding on flossing in that area. It's always a good idea to see your local dentist to have them evaluate the area and explain it in more detail. Whatever you do, don't stop flossing! You do not need to be aggressive, but you do need to be consistent about continual flossing in that problem area. Hopefully this helps.
It could be you have a localized periodontal issue there or have a calculus. Have the area examined.
You may have a food particle lodged in the area that has created some plaque and tartar. Another possibility is that you may have a vertical root fracture. Either way, You should see a dentist to have an evaluation.
You probably have a periodontal pocket, i.e. a detached gum attachment around that tooth. See a dentist or specialist periodontist to fix the problem.
The most common problem is a periodontal pocket. There is an area of the gums between the teeth where food debris and plaque accumulates more so than in other areas of the mouth. When these areas trap food and bacteria it is very difficult to clean well. The bodies response to the irritated site is bleeding.
The area in question needs periodontal care by your dentist and/or hygienist.
If it has been a while (more than 6 months) since you had a professional cleaning, you may have a piece of hard tartar stuck on that tooth under the gum in that spot. The tartar gives the plaque bacteria more surface area to grow on, and the more plaque bacteria, the more toxins. Like any living thing, the plaque bacteria take in "food" and give off a waste product, which is acidic. This acid irritates and inflames the gums and causes them to bleed and eventually, the gum will "back away" from the irritation leading to gum recession and bone loss. The best thing of course is go to your dentist and have the Dr or the dental hygienist check the area to see if they can find the cause. They may want to Xray the area as well to see if there is any tartar visible under the gum, or possibly a cavity that may be collecting food, but not really big enough to be painful. I also know that if I get "lazy" and maybe don't floss for several days or a week (I'm human too) , and then when I do floss again for that first time, my gums will bleed, but it's usually several spots and not just one spot. Best bet is have the dentist take a look. Hope that helps. Dr Sims