Swollen Gums

Change of gums from a thin, well-adapted, continuous covering around the teeth to a thick swollen red mass, may not only appear unsightly, but also acts as a platform for further destruction of healthy teeth and supporting bone.

Periodontics deals with treatment of diseases of gum, surrounding teeth. The condition is treated by scaling, deep curettage, flap surgery, alveolar bone reconstruction surgery, bone grafting etc. What is Endodontics? Endodontics deals with treatments like crowning/capping, inlays, outlays, root canal treatments and restorations


1. Most common cause is infection of the “gingiva”, by a thin covering of food and bacteria on the tooth surface called “Plaque”. The bacterial content of this plaque trigger a response from the gingiva, which results in a swelling. The swelling is caused by accumulation of white blood cells and fluids, which in turn counteracts the action of the bacteria.

2. Due to certain normal condition such as pregnancy and puberty, there is swelling of the gingiva seen. This swelling is an abnormal response to the normal bacteria present in the mouth. The abnormal response is a result of hormonal changes or variation seen during the above-mentioned conditions.

3. Certain disease or deficiency condition may also result in swollen gingiva


1. Pain may or may not be present.

2. If the cause is infection then, the initial stage is indicated by the presence of bright red gingiva.

3. The gingiva becomes soft and spongy; rarely it may become thickened due to formation of scar tissue.

4. Bleeding of the gingiva is another common symptom in the advanced stage.

5. Swelling caused by the drugs is usually very hard and thick. The gingiva will become swollen even after treatment of the swelling. The swelling occurs only when the drug is administered for a certain period of time.


Bleeding of the gums is seen, when a sharp thin metal instrument is passed along the margin connecting the tooth and the gingiva. This bleeding indicates inflammation.


In case of swelling due to inflammation, good care of the teeth and the gums by proper and timely brushing and usage of mouth washes can reduce the swelling.

If collection of plaque or food debris is in large amount then professional help is required to remove the deposits, which are firmly stuck to the teeth.

If swelling is due to drugs, stoppage of the drug automatically causes a reduction of swelling.

In case of swelling due to general illness correction of the health problem . Usually results in an improvement.


Can a swollen gum cause any discomfort?

It is usually associated with a mild constant gnawing pain, or may cause no pain at all The swelling may hamper the normal brushing, resulting in the increased accumulation of bacteria and hence cause more inflammation and destruction of gum tissue.


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