Common reasons for swollen gums

Swollen gums

Gums swelling has been a frequent issue to almost every one of us. Sometimes you might wonder why do you acquire it when you feel your hygiene is adequate. However, the reason varies from person to person and not every enlargement are the same. There are local and systemic factors which contribute invariably for gums swelling. Here come the possible reasons for swollen gums.



Microorganisms are inevitable in the oral cavity. Nevertheless, it is mandatory to control their proliferation in order to prevent damages to the oral structures. Plaque and calculus are the microbial depositions over the tooth structure, which immediately affects the gums. On constant irritation, your gums become swollen and bleeding occurs. It also has a tendency to undergo further destruction of bones and loss of tooth structures, if untreated.

Proper cleaning at regular intervals, preferably since early-stage plaque deposits would eventually helpful for improving oral hygiene



Apart from the local cause, there are many health ailments which could reflect on the oral structures, particularly on the gums. This awareness is more likely required to analyze the possible health disturbances at the earliest.


Vitamin C deficiency has a major role in gum destruction by affecting the collagen mechanism. Lack of vitamin C does not directly affect the gums, however, mild damages that occur due to the presence of local irritants like a plaque would more likely get amplified and enhance the destruction process out of vitamin C inadequacy. In addition to that, other vitamins like B complex, vitamin A and vitamin D also has a level of contribution in maintaining gingival health.

If you are facing frequent bleeding or fragile gums with no obvious medical complaints, it is important to rule out vitamin deficiencies.


Diabetes has become a common health impairment in today’s world. Being said, it not only affects other internal organs function but also has its own impaction over the gum’s health. Severe gingival inflammation, rapid bone loss, deep periodontal pockets, frequent abscess formation and delayed wound healing are common features of uncontrolled diabetes.

To maintain a healthy oral environment, it is necessary to have a control on your sugar level. Otherwise, you are perhaps prone to collapsing the dentition.


This condition does not affect the gums directly, however it causes increased demineralization of bones and which affects the supporting gum structure.


If you are worried about the seasonal tightening of gums and increased bleeding particularly during periods or pregnancy, it is all because of hormonal changes, especially progesterone. But again, the hormonal activity itself does not trigger the gingival changes and the presence of local irritants like plaque will augment the gum inflammation and bleeding. Menopause and hormonal contraceptives also contribute a similar role. Perhaps proper oral hygiene could provide a justifiable solution.


Leukemic cell infiltration is a special kind of cells which predominantly seen on the gums of the patients who suffer from blood cancer. It causes profuse bleeding of the gums and inflammation, along with frequent ulceration of the gingiva. In many instances, gum changes are a pivotal indication for leukaemia.

However other blood disorders like anaemia and thrombocytopenia also sometimes manifest with gingival inflammation or to least extend, gingival colour changes. Fragile gums with spontaneous bleeding are frequent in reduced platelet count.


Reduced immunity or lack of immunity could also cause gingival changes like fetid odour, swelling, bleeding and supportive structural loss. There are numerous conditions which disturb the immune system; however, in general, gums are solely affected.


To the surprise, stress is an unknown reason for chronic gum inflammation and its corresponding bleeding and damages. Nevertheless, it cannot be resolved until and unless the mental causes are sorted out.


Certain medications also have the potency to enlarge the gingiva. Notably, drugs taken for seizure, immunosuppression, hypertension or heart disease could sometimes cause gums enlargement, which nevertheless subsides eventually after dose alteration.

Out of these various reasons, it is important to sort of the correct one at the right time in order to prevent further damages, to both tooth structure and internal organs.


Carranza’s clinical periodontology 9th edition


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