My gums hurt when I brush, what could cause this?

If your gums are sore after you brush, you may need to replace your toothbrush and modify the technique you’re using when brushing your teeth. The American Dental Association (ADA) has recommended that adults use a soft-bristled toothbrush only, as medium and hard-bristled brushes can damage both the tooth enamel and the sensitive gum tissue. In addition, you need to ensure that you are brushing with a soft, circular motion, as if you were massaging the plaque and build-up off your teeth and gums, instead of scrubbing it off. Using a scrubbing motion can irritate the gums, causing them to bleed. It is also important that you use the correct technique when flossing each day. Be gentle, and avoid forcing the floss between your teeth. Carefully slide the dental floss up and down, being sure to follow the curve of each tooth in order to effectively remove buildup between the teeth without causing damage to the sensitive gum tissue.

If your gums are still sore after changing your toothbrush and updating your brushing and flossing techniques, it is important that you schedule an appointment with one of our dentists right away. Sore gums may be an indication of gingivitis or periodontitis. When left untreated, these conditions can weaken the gums, leading to tooth loss and infection. Over time, this infection may spread into your jaw bone, and into other places in your neck and head.

There are a number of other symptoms that you may experience in addition to sore gums if you are suffering from gingivitis, including:

  • Changes in your bite, or the fit of your dentures;
  • Deep pockets forming between your gums and teeth;
  • Gums that bleed, especially during or after brushing;
  • A bad taste in the mouth, or persistent bad breath unrelated to your diet;
  • Receding gums.

If your gums are unusually sore or swollen, or if you have noticed any of the symptoms mentioned above, it is important that you have your gums checked right away. Call one of our caring dentists for a consultation today. We look forward to helping you achieve the healthy, pain-free smile that you deserve.

About James Kline DDS

My name is Dr. James Kline, and it has been my pleasure to serve the South Bay for 38 years in the same location at Manhattan Beach Dental Center. A California native, I received my pre-dental education at Pasadena Nazarene College. At the age of 21, I started Dental School at the University of Southern California where I was graduated in 1973. As a result of their excellent training, I am very comfortable performing more involved procedures like Root Canal Therapy and Oral Surgery such as Wisdom Tooth Extractions. Continuous training allows me to provide Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry. For your convenience, I have a Dental Laboratory on the premises. This allows me to work closely with the Dental Technician to fabricate the most functional and esthetic Partials and Dentures. I am also able to accommodate emergency Denture Repairs on the spot.As your General Dentist, I care about your dental conditions as it relates to your overall health and well being. Your comfort during dental procedures is my highest concern. I work at your pace and offer free Nitrous Oxide Gas. I remain committed to giving you a healthy and attractive smile with honest and conservative treatment while developing a long term relationship.My hobbies include traveling, fishing, Texas Hold’em, Swimming, and Singing. My passion is Barbershop Quartet Singing which I started at age twelve. It has allowed me to perform in concerts around the world for 40 years. Ultimately my Quartet won the coveted International Barbershop Quartet Championship in 2004. I have two children, both married, and a beautiful baby granddaughter. I have been blessed to serve this community and look forward to doing so for many years to come. I enjoy coming to the office everyday and I’m encouraged the company of my wonderful staff and patients. I look forward to meeting you. At our office, we have a relaxed atmosphere. There’s a open reception area that allows me meet, greet and answer any questions that our clients may have. We have a great play area for kids and many of our adult patients have a great time in our waiting room. On any given day, a spontaneous “party” can happen in the front area while serious dentistry is getting performed. We take pride in getting to know our patients and making them feel comfortable, like family, and not just an anonymous face off the street. This is what sets us apart from any other practice in the area.
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