Are You Suffering from Itchy Gums? Cause, Symptoms & Treatment


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Dr Sukanya Goswami
Sukanya has done BDS. She is a dentist, a blogger, an extrovert, and a travel enthusiast. She is also a spiritual believer. When she is not working, you can find her reading books.

Ever felt a weird tickle or tingling sensation in your gums? Often such situations are very uncomfortable, and the individual feels like brushing the teeth to get rid of this feeling. Gums are the soft oral tissue that surrounds the teeth and firmly supports it to stay in the bony socket. Itching of the gums is a relatively common dental problem that creates an unpleasant feeling to scratch the gums frequently. (1)

Itchy gums can be caused by several reasons such as an allergic reaction, poor oral hygiene, injury to the gums, gum disease, and dry mouth. It is essential to understand the underlying cause to treat the symptoms appropriately. Often, professional tooth cleaning, use of antihistamine, and healing of gum injury may help to soothe the itching sensation in the gums.

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The best way to prevent gum itching is to maintain proper health and hygiene of the gums and teeth. Moreover, take precautions to minimize the risk of gum injury. Let’s read the article further to understand the possible causes of itchy gums. Furthermore, we will discuss the professional treatment and home remedies of gum itching.

What are the causes of itchy gum?

Gums are the most crucial aspect of dental health. They cover the tooth roots and underlying bone. Moreover, they firmly hold and support the tooth in the bony socket. A wide range of factors can cause itching of the gums. Some of the common causes of gum itching include –

Plaque accumulation – poor oral hygiene

Dental plaque is characterized as a thin film of food debris, bacteria, and toxins that stick around the surface of the teeth and gums. plaque builds over time can forms a white to yellowish layer on the teeth and gums. (2) As the plaque accumulates in the mouth, it can initiate gum disease and increase the risk of gum sensitivity, bleeding as well as itching.

Gum disease

The first phase of gum disease is gingivitis, which his caused by excessive plaque and bacterial growth in the mouth. Improper cleaning of the teeth and gums leads to the slow progression of gum disease into periodontal disorder. Such conditions often lead to itching of the gums, and the patient usually feels a need to take a toothpick and prick the gums periodically.

Gum injury

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Often accidental trauma or damage to the gums can lead to pain, itching, and discomfort. damage can happen while playing a contact sport, teeth grinding, or as a result of a self-inflicting behavior. In such cases, the gums become red, inflamed, or irritated and itchy. (3) Some other causes of itchy gums include –

  • Allergic reactions from food, seeds, pets, and medicines (4)
  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy, puberty or menstruation
  • Chronic dry mouth
  • Irritation of the gums from ill-fitting dental devices such as dentures

What are the symptoms of itchy gum?

Some of the typical symptoms of itchy gums include –

  • Continuous feeling of scratching the gums with a sharp object such as toothpick (5)
  • Redness around the gums due to irritation
  • Inflamed gums
  • Pain and discomfort
  • Bleeding on toothbrushing or flossing

What is the treatment for itchy gum?

Treatment of itchy gums usually depends on the type of underlying cause. There are several professional and home remedies that can help to treat the gum itching. Some of the mare listed below –

Professional treatment

  • Scaling and root planning – professional tooth cleaning using an electric tool is one of the best ways to remove plaque and bacteria. Moreover, it reduces the risk of gum disease. Root planing helps to clean the gums on a deeper level and remove the tartar from the receding gums as well. (6)
  • Mouthguards – mouth guards are a preventive method to minimize the risk of accidental gum injury caused usually while playing contact sports.
  • Antihistamine is excellent for mild allergic reactions to food or any other allergen.
  • Laser treatment is a little expensive as compared to the traditional tooth cleaning procedure. However, it effectively helps to sterilize the bacteria and plaque around the gums.

Home remedies

Home remedies are often the preventive methods that help to seize the dental problem. Additionally, it helps to maintain good oral health for an extended period.

  • It is essential to maintain regular oral hygiene by brushing the teeth twice a day, followed by flossing once a day. (7)
  • Saltwater rinsing helps to strengthen the gum tissue and maintain good oral health.
  • Gum massage with ice cubes helps to cool the gums and stop the itching sensation. Moreover, it helps to maintain hydration in the mouth.
  • Lifestyle modifications can play a crucial role in maintaining the health of the gums. Quit smoking, avoid acidic and spicy food, and minimize the consumption of alcohol.

Take away message

Your dental health is one of the most crucial aspects of improving overall health and well-being. It is essential to always take good care of your teeth and gums by following simple home-care techniques. Gums are one of the most sensitive parts of your mouth. They play a crucial role in holding the teeth firmly in the jaw. Moreover, they cover the tooth and the underlying bone to protect it from the harmful effects of bacteria and plaque.

Often, poor oral hygiene, gum injury, gum disease, an allergic reaction, and hormonal changes may cause irritation and itching of the gums. Professional treatment of itchy gums often includes scaling and root planning, mouth guards, and antihistamine medications. Home remedies are best to prevent gum disease and irritation that may cause itching of the gums.

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