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Gum Pain Causes

Gum Pain Causes

Pain in the gum can be caused by various factors, ranging from injury to serious gum diseases like periodontitis. The treatment for this condition depends on the underlying cause.
HealthHearty Staff
Last Updated: Feb 8, 2018
Usually, gum pain is accompanied with soreness or tenderness. Sometimes, inflammation, redness, and bad breath may also develop, especially in case of gum diseases. Most of these diseases are caused by bacterial, viral, or fungal infection. In general, bacterial infection is found to be the main cause of gum diseases.
Causes

Gum Injury
The gum may sustain injuries, when food particles lodge below the gum line, or while chewing hard food items. Toothbrush abrasions are also among the most common gum injuries. Such injuries can cause gum pain and swelling, and may result in canker sores. Usually, these conditions resolve on their own, within a week or so.
Gingivitis
This is a gum disease, that causes inflammation of the gum, along with pain and redness. The gum becomes soft, puffy, and tender, and tends to bleed easily. Some people may develop bad breath too. Plaque is the main reason for gingivitis, as it causes bacterial buildup, thereby irritating the gum. If left untreated, the condition may worsen to periodontitis that may cause even tooth loss.
Periodontitis
This is a gum infection that affects the gum, the tooth, as well as the bone that supports the tooth. If not treated on time, periodontitis can affect the deeper tissues of the gum and cause tooth loss. It can also increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Periodontitis can make the gum swollen, red, and tender. Apart from pain, the condition is also accompanied with bad breath and altered taste. The gum line may recede and tooth loss may occur.
Impacted Tooth
An impacted tooth is the one that fails to erupt through the gum; it grows sideways instead. The condition causes pain in the gum and inner cheek. Jawbone pain, difficulty in opening the mouth, constant headache, etc., are some of the other symptoms. The gum may get red, tender, and swollen. Bad breath may also develop.
Apart from these causes, gum pain can be a symptom of tooth decay or abscess. Sometimes, vitamin deficiency can also lead to problems associated with the teeth and gum. Vitamin B12 and C are considered very important for the health of gums and teeth.
Treatment

Usually, gum pain caused by minor injuries or burns is not a cause of concern. Such conditions may resolve on their own. For temporary relief from the pain, you can try saline water as a mouthwash or oral rinse. Rinse your mouth several times a day. It is beneficial for relieving the pain and for healing abrasions caused by the injury or trauma. Otherwise, you can apply ice on the inflamed and sore gum. This would also provide quick pain relief.
Another effective home remedy for gum pain is baking soda. Mix baking soda and water to prepare a thick paste, and apply it on the affected gum. This will prevent bacterial growth inside the mouth. Clove oil and tea tree oil are also popular as remedies for problems of the gum and teeth.
If these natural remedies fail to provide any relief, you must consult your dentist, so as to diagnose the underlying cause and get it treated at the earliest. The dentist may prescribe analgesics and anti-inflammatory medications to reduce the pain and inflammation. Further treatment is decided as per the underlying cause and severity of the condition.
Prompt treatment would not only help to alleviate the symptoms, but will also help to prevent serious complications. Maintaining proper oral hygiene is equally important. Avoid chewing tobacco, which is often found to be a major contributory factor of a number of gum problems.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice. Visiting your physician is the safest way to diagnose and treat any health condition.