Learn about your teeth and gums and how to keep them healthy in "bite size" articles.This is going to make you Smile.. Healthy!!!

Bleeding gums - The Story behind Plaque and Tartar

Though most people claim that the sight of blood scares them , blood is what they see, first thing in the morning. Bleeding from gums is a very very common disease.

What causes it??
The most common cause is inflammation of the gums .. called

Let us see what inflammation is - When bacteria attack your gums, the defence cells in the body fight against the bacteria. Additionally , the gums become red and swollen. Because of the increased number of fragile capillaries, the gums become easily injured by a toothbrush bristles and bleed immediately.

So how do these bacteria get to the gums?? Here is where it becomes essential to learn about plaque and tartar.

After a meal, food often accumulates inbetween and on the tooth surfaces. Thorough rinsing usually clears it up. But huge numbers of bacteria attach to this and form a very soft whitish deposit on the teeth. This attaches to the tooth very tenaciously and does not get removed by rinsing. This layer is called a PLAQUE - a layer that is teaming with millions of bacteria.

TARTAR is formed when this difficult to remove plaque get calcified with minerals. i.e Instead of being soft, the deposits become hard over time and become even more difficult to remove.

To appreciate their importance, imagine a delicate tissue like your gums onto which harmful bacteria are dripping in millions from the attached plaque and tartar contributing to inflammation and bleeding.

So how do u prevent this?

Plaque -

1.Can be removed by correct brushing.
2.Plaque formation can be prevented by anti-plaque mouth washes.
3. Plaque betwen two teeth can be removed using dental floss and interproximal brushes.

Tartar -
1. After it is formed, can be removed only in a dentist's clinic.

Ideally , if you have bleeding from youy gums, brush with a soft bristled tooh brush in the correct manner. You should more importantly, contact your dentist for a professional scaling.

Cheers! and Keep Smiling .. Healthy!!


  1. Dr Vidhya. Im carnivorous in diet and hardcore fan of it :). But when i have some non-veg food it gets stuck between my tooth's and causes hell lot of problems.Like bleeding of the gums especially after brushing and gums get inflammed.There is also a gap between all of the non grinding tooth's and I do brush twice a day.

  2. You are probably brushing wrong. Second, your gums maybe inflammed due to the presence of plaque and tartar for which you need a scaling. For all the spacing between your teeth you will probably need braces to align them properly. If they are your front tooth, a tooth coloured restorative material maybe used to fill the gaps.