Just as most folks have difficulty smelling their own bad breath, many people are under the impression that that have healthy gums when, in fact, they don't. By avoiding specialty oral care products and leaving gum tissue to its own devices, you are essentially inviting gingivitis to make itself at home.
What is gum disease? Simply put, this condition - also known as gingivitis - occurs when the bacteria that live in your mouth begin to multiply out of control beneath your gum tissue. This infection can be mild at first, causing little more than a slight redness or swelling.
Over time, though, gingivitis can become more severe, causing formerly healthy gums to become extremely painful. The National Institutes of Health states that extensive gingivitis can cause gums to swell significantly and turn bright red or even purple. This infection may also cause bleeding, sores and halitosis.
If you don't take care of your gums now, you may be at risk for even more severe diseases later on. The Mayo Clinic warns that untreated gingivitis can pave the way for periodontal disease, a more severe infection of roots of your teeth. This condition is one of the prime causes of tooth loss - and it leads to some seriously bad breath, too.
What can you do to keep your gums healthy and pink? The most basic oral care regimen is a good start. Brush your teeth at least twice per day, being sure to gently scrub your gums. When you clean between your teeth, be sure to pull the floss down below the gum line, in order to pull up any food particles that have lodged out of sight.
Using an alcohol-based mouthwash may not be a good idea, since it can irritate tender gums and cause canker sores. Instead, try rinsing with a specialty mouthwash, followed by a probiotics product.