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Why Do You Have Itchy Gums?

Have you ever experienced itchy gums? You may feel a tickle or tingle around your gumline that turns into discomfort. Itchy gums are typically a result of poor oral hygiene, but a dental professional can diagnose and offer treatment to give your itchy gums relief.

These are the following reasons why you might be experiencing itchy, irritating gums:

1. Plaque Build-up

Plaque is a common cause of itchy gums. It's a sticky film found on your teeth and gums, made up of bacteria, sugars, and germs. The more plaque you have, the higher your chances of developing cavities and gum disease. Like most oral care issues, brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and seeing a dental professional twice a year will help eliminate plaque and reduce this risk factor for itchy gums.

2. Gum Disease

Neglecting regular oral hygiene can lead to periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease. The most common periodontal disease is gingivitis. In this case, the itching may seem insignificant compared to the swelling and bleeding associated with gum disease. Fortunately, thorough deep cleaning from a dental professional and regular oral care at home, including a daily antimicrobial rinse, should help prevent the itching and gum disease from returning.

3. Allergies.

Allergies cause itching in your eyes, nose, and skin, and sometimes in your gums. Oral itchiness is usually triggered in two ways:

  • Certain products (toothpaste, mouthwash, etc.) with specific ingredients can irritate and inflame your gums, leading to itching.
  • Oral allergy syndrome can cause swelling of the lips, scratchiness in the throat, and an itchy mouth and gums. This can occur from cross-reacting allergens found in pollen, raw fruits, vegetables, and some tree nuts.

Your dentist can recommend certain oral care products without ingredients that irritate your gums and mouth, while a medical doctor can diagnose what you're allergic to so you know what to avoid in the future.

4. After Surgery

It's not uncommon for your gums to itch after having your wisdom teeth removed. Rinsing with saltwater could help. Speak with your dentist if that doesn't do the trick. The last thing you want to do is scrub and scratch anywhere near the location of your surgery. It could disrupt your healing process, so be very careful!

Chances are plaque and/or gum disease are the culprits causing your itchy gums. And if that's the case, a good oral care routine will drastically improve your situation and squash the itch. If your itch doesn't go away, check in with a dental professional so they can properly examine your gums and teeth. They'll be itching to get to the bottom of your itch as well.