If you constantly spot blood while brushing or flossing, it could be gingivitis. A mild infection of the gum, other symptoms of gingivitis include gum irritation, redness and swelling. You may also notice bad breath, receding gums and loose teeth.
The primary cause of gingivitis is poor oral hygiene, although experts say that other risk factors include smoking, crooked teeth, ill-fitting dental appliances, pregnancy, diabetes, compromised immunity and poor diet. If not treated properly, it may lead to periodontitis that may cause tooth loss, damage of tissues that support your teeth and even heart attack and stroke.
In the meantime, here are 10 effective home remedies against gingivitis:
1. Salt gargle
Dump 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a glass of lukewarm water, mix and gargle. Do this in the morning and evening.
2. Lemon juice mouthwash
In a glass of lukewarm water, squeeze and entire lemon juice and stir. Use this right after brushing your teeth in the morning and at night.
3. Peppermint rinse
Clean a few peppermint leaves, crush, and dump them in a glass of water. Allow to steep for a few minutes and use it to rinse your mouth with. Do this up to 3 times per day.
4. Guava leaves
Pick a handful of guava leaves. Wash them thoroughly and chew them for a few seconds. Spit the leaves. Repeat 2 times a day until the symptoms disappear.
Chewing on 2 to 3 cloves up to 3 times a day can help deal with gingivitis. However, this homemade solution should be avoided by pregnant women.
6. Oil swish
Grab a bottle of sesame oil or coconut oil. Place a tablespoon of it in your mouth and swish for 15 to 20 minutes. Spit and rinse with water. Do this prior to brushing your teeth in the morning.
7. Baking soda paste
Mix 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda and a few drops of water. Apply the resulting paste on swollen gums and rinse after 1 to 2 minutes. Do this 2 to 3 times per week.
8. Turmeric gum pack
Add a few drops of water to 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder to come up with a thick paste. Apply this on the affected areas. Let it stay there for about 10 minutes. Rinse with water.
9. Aloe vera gel
Break off an aloe vera leaf and collect the gel within. Apply it on the affected gum areas. Gargle with water after 10 minutes.
10. Tea tree oil
Add a drop of tea tree oil to the toothpaste of your choice whenever brushing your teeth. Make sure you don’t swallow any of the foam as tea tree oil may irritate your digestive tract.
If none of the DIY solutions above seem to improve the condition, set foot inside your dentist’s clinic. Remember that it’s important to regularly pay your trusted dentist a visit to avoid gingivitis and other oral problems.