Are Toothpaste Allergies a Real Thing? 10 Reasons Why Your Gums are Itchy

Attending regular dental cleanings and oral exams is essential for maintaining excellent oral health. During a visit, your Marietta dentist may identify various issues. These range from the early stages of gum disease and tooth decay to cracked teeth, and even oral cancer. Further, there’s another important (but less commonly discussed) reason for visiting your dentist – it’s having itchy gums. In reality, itchy gums can be an early warning sign of a severe problem, and understanding the cause is crucial for good overall dental health.

Why Do My Gums Itch?

Gums can itch for many issues including bacterial infections and allergies. It is always best to get your symptoms checked by a dentist to receive proper treatment.

Effective at-home oral hygiene is important to minimize your chances of itchy gums and other dental problems. Let’s explore some reasons why you may be experiencing itchy gums in the first place.

Reasons Why Your Teeth and Gums Are Itchy

10 Reasons for Itchy Gums

  1. Plaque and tartar buildup – Regular brushing and flossing is so important to remove bacteria, plaque and tartar to minimize itchy, painful gums.
  2. Gum/Periodontal disease – If tartar and plaque do not get removed near the gumline, it can cause gum disease or periodontal disease. Your dentist can provide treatment for gum disease. However, a cure for periodontitis is typically only possible if the condition is identified in its earliest stages.
  3. Toothpaste allergies – Some people suffer from toothpaste allergies although it is rare. Toothpaste contact dermatitis, on the other hand, is more common and symptoms can include: swollen gums, mouth sores, irritated tongue, and itching/peeling of the skin around the mouth.
  4. Hormones – Hormone fluctuations can cause many changes in the body, putting some at risk for itchy gums and/or gum disease.
  5. Dry mouth – Lots of people suffer from dry mouth for many reasons. Be sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day to stop itchy gums.
  6. Teeth grinding (bruxism) – Teeth grinding oftentimes causes tooth enamel erosion and receding gums (sometimes itchy). There are several types of treatments to reduce or eliminate bruxism.
  7. Teething – Teething in babies and toddlers can cause sore and/or itchy gums. Ask your child’s pediatrician for homeopathic or over-the-counter remedies to relieve itchy gums. Adults can also experience itchy gums when the wisdom teeth erupt.
  8. Tooth abscess – This pocket of pus resulting from an infection can create a painful tooth abscess, which sometimes also causes itchy gums. An abscess should be treated right away to relieve symptoms.
  9. Poor oral hygiene – This might be the most common reason for itchy gums. You should always brush your teeth at least 2-3 times every day and floss 1-2 times per day. If you aren’t sure how to correctly brush or floss your teeth, please ask our dental hygienists or dentist when you come in for your appointment.
  10. Canker sores, viral infections or oral herpes – These issues can sometimes negatively impact the gums, causing them to be sore and/or itchy.

How a Dentist Diagnoses Itchy Gums

Dentists check the gums using a combination of visual examination, probing and dental X-rays. After the evaluation, an effective gum disease treatment or related solution is recommended. The following are factors in reaching a diagnosis.

  • Medical history review – Checking a patient’s medical history and identifying risk factors for gum disease.
  • Visual examination – Inspecting the teeth, mouth and gums for signs of redness and inflammation, along with bleeding and receding gums.
  • Probing – Using a periodontal probe to check the depth of the pockets between the teeth and gums.
  • Dental X-rays – Taking X-rays to identify bone damage around the teeth and signs of advanced periodontitis.

Contact Us for Dental Cleaning and Gum Disease Treatment in Marietta

Shining Smiles Family Dentistry provides a range of oral health treatments for patients in the Marietta area. If you suffer from inflammation, itchy gums, toothache and other dental issues, visit our dental office for assistance. Call (770) 420-8550 or request an appointment today.

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