Many people worry about oral pain that could be related to serious issues like tooth decay, cavities, and other concerns. You may not even realize that itchy gums are a thing until you experience this uncomfortable condition.
However, when your gums start to tickle and crawl, you’re not only going to wonder why, but you’ll want to figure out how to make this annoying sensation stop. What, exactly, causes itchy gums? There are several possible sources.
You might automatically assume that itchy gums are related to poor oral hygiene, but this isn’t necessarily the case. Did you know that natural hormonal shifts could be to blame for that prickly feeling in your gums?
In addition to the many bodily changes and symptoms related to puberty, menopause, menstruation, and pregnancy, you may experience itchy gums when your hormones are out of whack. Other oral symptoms could include sensitivity, discomfort, and bleeding gums. If any of these occur, you’ll want to speak to your dentist to determine the cause and appropriate treatment.
Some people naturally produce a lot of saliva while others produce less, and certain ailments and medications can cause saliva to dry up. When you experience dry mouth, for whatever reason, you may find yourself having to contend with itching related to this dryness, including an itchy tongue, gums, and other soft tissues in the mouth. Staying hydrated and using products designed to increase moisture or simulate saliva can help to reduce symptoms and keep your mouth healthy.
Perhaps you enjoy contact sports that frequently rattle your cage, so to speak. Or maybe your stress levels have brought on a case of bruxism, including teeth grinding and/or jaw clenching. Certain activities and conditions can cause injury to your teeth or jaws, and affect the gums, as well. If you have itchy gums, it could be a sign that some type of trauma has occurred.
Bad oral hygiene isn’t always to blame for itchy gums, but it’s certainly one possible explanation. When tartar and plaque build up on teeth, they could not only lead to serious oral health issues like gingivitis or periodontitis, but they could also cause a variety of unfortunate side effects in the meantime.
When the sticky substance known as plaque develops on teeth and extends below the gum line, it can start to irritate and even infect the gums. This, in turn, could cause you to experience an itching sensation. With a proper at-home regimen of daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing, paired with regular dental visits, you should be able to avoid this situation and the itchy gums that follow.