Swollen and bleeding gums are the most commonly seen symptoms in dental and oral disorders, usually a sharp toothache accompanied. Gingivitis, in children or in adult, can be a terrible nightmare, especially when the pain is such a throbbing shooting that it would keep you awake the whole night through. How to stop bleeding and swollen gums then? Probably taking over-the-counter painkillers might come to mind right off the top of your head, they, unfortunately, only bring a temporary relief in most cases. For the sake of a better cure, the priority should be given to figure out the specific causes first and then choose the corresponding solution, regardless of home remedies or regular treatment you pick finally. In addition, daily care matters too.
What causes swollen bleeding gums?
The causes for gum swelling and bleeding vary from the different points of views – modern medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).
From this perspective, they are mainly categorized into local and systemic factors.
(1). Local stimulation caused by wisdom teeth, receding gums, dental plaque, and tophi. The accumulations of the dental tophi and plaque, the usual result of food impaction, bad dentures, and poor oral hygiene, lead to periodontal diseases like plaque-induced gingivitis and periodontitis;
(2). Other local stimulations and oral bad habits. The stimulations, of mechanical causes, chemistry, defective dental prosthesis, bad obturator, bad appliance, and open-mouth breathing, result in focal inflammation such as hyperplastic inflamed gums and periodontal inflammation;
(3). Local tissue hypersensivity. Allergic reaction, induced by exposing locally to allergens, brings about red sore gums when gums involved. The example is plasma cell gingivitis;
(4). Painful traumatized gum around tooth and osseous surgery.
(1). Endocrine changes. Influenced and stimulated by increased levels of sex hormone and progestin, gingival tissue triggers nonspecific inflammation, which thus generates bleeding gums, increased exudation, and gingival hyperplasia, etc. The examples are puberty-associated gingivitis, pregnancy gingivitis, and paradentoma;
(2). Systemic diseases, such as blood system diseases like leukemia, diabetes mellitus, cardio vascular disorder, renal function disorders, and tumor, etc. This is usually ascribed to poor immune function, which thus results in weakened body’s defenses to local stimulation and then gingival inflammation, blood coagulation disorders, organic changes to blood vessels, and change in the Hemodynamics, etc.;
(3). Other external factors acting on the whole body, for example, smoking and taking blood thinners.
Traditional Chinese medicine
Natural remedies, like apple cider vinegar and baking soda, sometimes can bring in unexpected cures. In addition, herbal remedy is one of great optional natural solutions too, which can be made by yourself at home or bought over the counter from drug stores.
TCM thinks that teeth are the extensional part of bone, hosted by kidney. Combined with Stomach Channel of Foot Yang Ming passing through the upper gum and Large Intestine Channel of Hand Yang Ming through the lower gum, it is believed that an aching tooth is closely associated with kidney, stomach, and large intestine. And, there are a variety of causes for bleeding swollen gums, like wind-fire invading teeth, stomach fire flaring gum, deficient kidney yin, cold and heat stimuli, and decayed tooth, etc.
How to treat bleeding and swollen gums with home remedies?
Given the above-mentioned reasons, different herbal remedies should be adopted to reduce this condition based the diagnosis.
(1). Stomach fire flaring gum. The symptoms and signs are swelling and aching of gum, swollen cheek, even chewing difficulty, localized burning sensation, bitter taste in mouth, bad breath, constipation, red tongue with yellow coating, etc. The treatment should be clearing away heat, reducing fire, and relieving swelling and pain. The recommended herbal formula is Qing Wei San, modified accordingly. Regular Chinese herbs used are Shi Gao (Gypsum), Huang Lian (Coptis Rhizome), Sheng Di Huang (Rehmannia), Sheng Ma (Black Cohosh Rhizome), Huai Niu Xi (Achyranthes Root), Da Huang (Rhubarb), Chi Shao (Red Peony Root), Zhi Mu (Anemarrhena Rhizome), and Xu Chang Qing (Cynanchum Paniculatum Root);
(2). Flaring up of fire due to deficient kidney yin. The symptoms include slightly swollen gums, slight redness, dull soreness, loose and shaky teeth, or accompanied with gum bleeding. The cure should be nourishing yin for lowering fire and tonifying kidney to strengthen teeth. The formula of Liu Wei Di Huang Wan is highly recommended. Regular herbs are Shu Di Huang (Rehmannia), Nu Zhen Zi (Privet Fruit), Shan Zhu Yu (Asiatic Cornelian Cherry Fruit), Shan Yao (Chinese Yam), Huai Niu Xi, Ze Xie (Water Plantain Root), Gu Sui Bu (Drynaria Rhizome), and Xi Xin (Chinese Wild Ginger);
(3). Cold and heat stimuli. The symptoms are sudden onset, pain involving with forehead and two flanks of head, throbbing shooting, and no gum swelling and bleeding. If the pain is wandering, swift, and extending to forehead and flanks, it is caused by wind pathogen; if pain is triggered by inhaling of cold air or touching of cold substance and the sore spot is fixed, it is due to cold pathogen. Herbs for the former are Gui Zhi (Cinnamon Twig), Fang Feng (Ledebouriella Root), Bai Jie Zi (White Mustard Seed), Jie Geng (Balloon Flower Rhizome), Zi Su Ye (Perilla Leaf), Xu Chang Qing, Bai Shao (White Peony Root), and Gan Cao (Licorice Root); herbs for the latter are Dang Gui (Dong Quai), Xi Xin, Chuan Xiong (Szechuan Lovage Root), Bai Zhi (Angelica Root), Chuan Jiao (Szechuan Pepper), Zhi Ke (Ripe Fruit of Zhi Shi), Jie Geng, and Gan Cao;
(4). Decayed tooth. Oral drugs tend to have poor curative effect and it is preferred combining with local processing. Ding Tong San is recommended here. Herbs are Dang Gui, Sheng Di, Xi Xin, Bai Zhi, Lian Qiao (Forsythia Fruit), Ku Shen (Sophora Root), Chuan Jiao, Huang Lian, Wu Mei (Mume Fruit), Jie Geng, and Gan Cao.