Gum Sensitivity

Besides maintaining proper oral hygiene by brushing twice a day, flossing the teeth, and cleaning the oral cavity with the utmost care, some people experience sore and sensitive gums. Sore and sensitive gums lead to a bad experience and it can be mild or severe. Some people shrug off mild sensitivity or minor annoyance, but sore gums can be a sign of serious problems in a few people. It is important to know or understand the reasons or causes for gum sensitivity and treatments that can relieve the sensitivity.


If one experiences gum sensitivity, one might notice soreness while brushing and flossing their teeth. The pain may gradually linger or subside. Sometimes gum sensitivity can be accompanied by the following

  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Bleeding gums
  • Bad breath

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Gum Bleeding

There is a difference between gum sensitivity and teeth sensitivity. Depending on the location of your pain, you may have difficulty determining whether the problem comes from gums or teeth. If you have tooth sensitivity, you may also experience pain while eating food and drinking cool beverages.

Some of the causes of teeth sensitivity are as follows

  • Dental Caries
  • Poor restorations
  • Abrasion
  • Recession of gums
  • Attrition
  • Abfraction
  • Bruxism

Causes Of Gum Sensitivity

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Incorrect brushing techniques and hard brushing can also soreness in gums and may lead to bleeding gums also.
  • Gum sensitivity can occur due to dentures and braces also which are temporary causes and will be corrected automatically when the gingiva gets used to it.
  • Gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis can also lead to soreness of the gums as in these diseases the gums get inflamed and bleed very frequently.
  • Smoking can also cause gum soreness as it leads to gum disease which triggers gum sensitivity.
  • Underlying systemic problems like diabetes can also be a cause as uncontrolled diabetes contributes to the growth of bacteria in plaque due to less immune power.
  • Hormonal changes in cases of pregnancy, puberty, menopause, etc can cause increased blood flow to gums, making them more tender and sensitive.

Oral cavity infections like oral ulcers and canker sores also irritate the gums. The causes of canker sores are:

  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • Stress
  • Acidic foods
  • Autoimmune Disease

Stress can lead to elevated amounts of cortisol level. A high level of cortisol over a prolonged period causes inflammation in different parts of the body, including your gums. Oral thrush or herpes can include shallow sore or white lesions of oral mucosa accompanied by pain and can also be a cause of gum sensitivity or soreness.

Gum-Redness Image
Gum Redness


Home Treatment

  • Maintaining good oral hygiene by brushing your teeth twice daily using a soft-bristled brush.
  • Use proper brushing techniques and flossing techniques which help you in maintaining good oral hygiene.
  • Using antiseptic mouthwashes that help in reducing the number of bacteria.
  • Taking enough vitamin C- the daily needed amount ranges between 65 and 95mg to 2000mg per day.
  • Drink more water.
  • Quitting bad habits like smoking can help in improving oral condition.
  • Stress management by taking plenty of sleep and exercising daily can help in preventing gum sensitivity.

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Oral Ulcers

Dentist-associated Treatments

  • Oral gels and mouthwashes reduce the pain and soothe the sensitive gums in cases of oral ulcers and canker sores.
  • In cases of poor oral hygiene your dentist can advise you to undergo deep cleaning oral prophylaxis to prevent further damage to gums due to plaque and calculus.
  • In cases of severe pain, the dentist can prescribe pain medications and other appropriate medications needed depending on the case.
  • In cases of oral thrush antifungal drugs are prescribed.
  • In gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis, the necessary treatments like scaling, root planing, and flap surgeries can be done.

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