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If you’ve ever been to a dentist, you’ve probably heard something about flossing—but do you know why dentist put so much emphasis on it? Similarly, you probably know that cleaning plaque from your teeth is important, but do you know what could happen if you let plaque sit on your smile?

Unfortunately, plaque buildup may lead to several issues. Not removing plaque well enough could lead to gum disease, irritated gums, sensitive teeth, and damage to the jawbone. Unfortunately, the issues don’t stop in your mouth.

Plaque buildup can lead to overall health problems, including heart disease, respiratory issues, diabetes, cancer, erectile dysfunction, and dementia. To avoid these problems, it’s extremely important to remove plaque from your smile. This means you’ll have to floss thoroughly every day.

But what do you do if your gums bleed? In reality, bleeding gums can be caused by any of several factors. For instance, bleeding gums can be an indicator of gum disease. Fortunately, with good, consistent oral care—and a professional cleaning—this issue could clear up on its own. However, if gum disease reaches advanced stages, a dentist may need to offer you other solutions.

You may also deal with bleeding gums if you are taking medications that reduce clotting. If this is the case, speak to your dentist for specific help. Similarly, if you’ve just started flossing, your gums may bleed for a little while. However, if the bleeding doesn’t stop within a week, please contact our dentist. Finally, you could have a toothbrush that’s too hard. Hard bristles can aggravate your gums, making them more susceptible to bleeding.

If you would like to learn more—or are interested in scheduling an appointment with Dr. Abbott or Dr. Cahn—please feel free to contact Midlothian Dental Arts at 804-419-5155.