The 5 Most Common Causes of Gum Pain

As expert dentists here at AP Smilecare, we’re committed to maintaining to helping you maintain your gum health. Brushing daily is important for healthy teeth, but it also keeps our gums nice and healthy too. Healthy gums are pale pink, while unhealthy gums are red, swollen, and inflamed, and can be prone to bleeding. Here are five reasons why your gums can become sore and painful – and gum disease is not always the problem!

Brushing and Flossing Too Hard

There is such a thing as brushing too hard. A good technique is all important when brushing teeth. Gums are sensitive, so if you scrub away at them too hard, you will damage the tissue and cause inflammation. Massage your gums and teeth, rather than attacking them with brute force. Circular motions are best, which is why dentists recommend electric toothbrushes.
We recommend choosing a toothbrush with soft bristles and replace it every three months. Be careful when flossing, too. Don’t treat your dental floss like a cheese wire! Gently ease it up and down the curve of each tooth. Sawing back and forth will damage your gums.

Mouth Ulcers

Mouth ulcers or cankers are very painful. They often occur because of injury, such as biting your cheek, or because of autoimmune problems. If you have an ulcer on your gum, it will be painful. Use a topical treatment for relief or rinse your mouth out with a saltwater solution.

Top Reasons for Gum Pain

Gum Disease

Gum disease is the most common cause of gum pain. Gingivitis is the less serious form, but if it isn’t treated, you will end up with periodontitis. This causes red, inflamed, and bleeding gums. Gingivitis and periodontitis can be treated with expert care and effective dental hygiene, so make sure to make a dental appointment if your gums are bleeding and sore. If left untreated, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss.


Abrasions are usually caused by ill-fitting dentures or fixed braces. Dentures, braces and other hardware often irritate the mouth and gums, especially when they are first fitted. In time, your mouth tissue will get used to it, but it can take a few weeks for the tissue to harden. In the meantime, use an antibacterial mouthwash to reduce bacteria and prevent infections from occurring.


Surprisingly, hormones can affect our oral health. Some women experience sore gums when their hormones rise, for example, during pregnancy or when menstruating. Women who suffer from menstrual gingivitis have sore, inflamed and bleeding gums when their period is due, but the problem resolves a few days later. Menopausal women sometimes have dry gums, which become sore. Even taking oral contraceptives can affect gum health.
If you are female and you notice a discernible pattern to your gum problems, your hormones could be to blame.
When it comes to gum problems, prevention is always better than cure. Schedule dental check-ups at least twice a year. Your dentist can spot problems before they become major issues. In addition, brush your teeth twice daily and make time to floss once a day. Avoid sugary snacks and drink plenty of water to rinse your mouth out after food.

Here at AP Smilecare, your dental health is our top priority, which is why we offer a number of dentists in Blackburn to keep your smile looking and feeling amazing. Give us a call on 01254 297 000, or drop by our dental clinic in Blackburn to see what we can do for you!