Curing Gingivitis Naturally | Prevention and Symptoms
Symptoms of Gum Disease / Gingivitis
I realize that gingivitis is not a pleasant subject to bring up but it isn’t an affliction anyone wants to experience, so I will proceed for that reason. Let’s look into the symptoms of gum disease (which is what gingivitis is) and some possible ways of curing gingivitis naturally, but maybe more importantly, let’s find out how to prevent gingivitis, in the first place!
For those who don’t know or aren’t sure, gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums. It is mostly caused by a buildup of plaque between brushings. I have found that some people are way more susceptible to plaque buildup than others. If this malady is not treated when first discovered it can lead to very painful, swelled gums that bleed easily. If left long enough it can cause pockets to form between the teeth and gums which eventually causes the loss of teeth and severe infection.
Best Prevention of Gingivitis
The best prevention of gingivitis is to check your gums regularly to make sure they are not bright red, puffy, and sore. Excessive bleeding usually occurs after rigorous brushing.
So here are a few pointers to prevent gingivitis, and then we will move on to curing gingivitis naturally.
1. Brush your teeth twice a day.
This will ensure that the plaque that has built up will not have a chance to turn to tartar which is the bad stuff. Use an electric toothbrush if possible to maximize the benefits. Soft bristles are best and your toothbrush or toothbrush head should be replaced every three months.
2. Floss every day. Brushing is good but flossing is also necessary as it gets out plaque from between the teeth and is especially important for people who have “hardware in their mouths” such as braces.
*Just a side note here. Not all teeth cleaning products are created equal. Be sure to use ones that are approved by dental associations. The seal of approval will be on the container. But keep in mind that this seal doesn’t necessarily mean that the product is free of fluoride.
3. Visit a good dentist, periodically. If you are like me this is not high on my list of fun things to do, but is important. This visit twice yearly could go a long way towards keeping the big G. Monster away.
4. Watch your diet. Sugar is the biggest culprit for tooth decay and gingivitis. If you can’t resist and do consume high sugar foods and drinks, be sure to brush your teeth immediately after.
5. Avoid tobacco products.
Smoking is a major contributor to gingivitis as is chewing tobacco. This not only causes gingivitis, but wears away the enamel on your teeth.
6. Use mouthwash. If used in conjunction with brushing and flossing mouthwash goes a long way towards healthy teeth and gums. Swish it around your mouth and gargle with it, as this also helps to remove bacteria from the back of your mouth and upper throat. Further on in this article I will elaborate on good mouthwash to use.
Cure Gingivitis – Natural Remedies
Well now you have gone and done it. You didn’t follow the rules above and now have the big G. Well, here I come to your rescue!
Home remedies can be an effective way to cure gingivitis. One caution: yes they are made from natural ingredients, but you still should not swallow them when cleaning your teeth.
One more caution: If your symptoms are very severe (terrible pain or copious bleeding), or if the remedies don’t seem to be helping, see a doctor or dentist. Otherwise, if left untreated, you will be faced with more serious health problems.
Here are some natural mouthwash options:
Lemongrass oil mouthwash – in one study this was found to be more effective than regular mouthwash. Just dilute 2-3 drops of lemongrass essential oil in a cup of water. Swish and spit. Do this 2-3 times per day.
Aloe vera mouthwash – I use this myself and it is very effective. As soon as I feel a bit of soreness or see a bit of redness in my gums (my dentist calls me the plaque magnet) I head for the aloe vera gel. Two applications usually do the trick. Unlike other options, aloe vera does not need to be diluted. Swish the juice or gel in your mouth for 30 seconds and spit it out. Repeat 2-3 times per day. Make sure you buy your aloe vera from a reputable dealer. I get mine from my local health food store.
Tea tree oil mouthwash – this works the same as the above mentioned remedies. Add 2-3 drops to a cup of warm water. Swish and spit about 2-3 times per day. You could also add a drop of this oil to your toothpaste.
Sage mouthwash – researchers found that this mouthwash significantly lowered the plaque causing bacteria. This one is a bit more involved. Boil 1-2 cups of water. Add 2 tablespoons of fresh sage of 1 teaspoon of dried sage. Simmer for 5-10 minutes. Strain and allow to cool. Rinse 2-3 times per day.
Chlorine dioxide solution – otherwise known as CDS or MMS, this will cure just about everything. NO, IT IS NOT BLEACH!
Oil Pulling for Gingivitis
Have you heard of oil pulling? This is a technique that involves swishing oil around in your mouth for 20-30 minutes to reduce harmful bacteria, eliminate toxins, and improve oral health. Oil pulling for gingivitis has been used for thousands of years.
Coconut oil pulling – Due to its lauric acid, coconut oil significantly reduces plaque and signs of gingivitis. As a bonus it whitens teeth, freshens breath, clears sinuses, and relieves tension. Simply put 1-2 teaspoons of fractionated coconut oil (liquid at room temperature rather than the stuff you have to heat) into your mouth and swish for 20-30 minutes. Spit and rinse with water. Spit and drink a full glass of water. Brush your teeth.
Caution: If using coconut oil for gingivitis treatment, do not swallow the swishing material, as it contains toxins and bacteria pulled from the tissue in your mouth. Stands to reason, right?
Topical Treatments for Gingivitis
OK, so the gingivitis has not totally disappeared after all the swishing and spitting. It is time to bring out the big gums…err guns – topical treatments for gingivitis.
Cloves – it is believed that cloves prevent plaque and reduce inflammation. To apply topically mince about one teaspoon of cloves. Dip a damp cotton ball into the mixture. Rub onto your gums and let sit for about a minute. Swish and spit (getting used to this yet?). Only precaution do not use for long periods of time.
Turmeric gel – able to effectively prevent plaque, and can help to heal bleeding and reddening of gums. Curcuma, which is the active ingredient in turmeric, can also be used. To apply brush your teeth, rinse thoroughly, apply turmeric gel to your gums, let sit for ten minutes. Yep, you guessed it. Swish and spit. Repeat twice a day.
Salt water rinse – using a salt water rinse for gingivitis is a very simple yet effective way to heal it. Salt is a natural disinfectant that helps your body to heal itself. It also soothes inflamed gums, reduces bacteria, eases pain, removes particles of food, and relieves bad breath. To use, add half to three quarters of a teaspoon of salt to a glass of lukewarm water and mix well. Altogether now, come on, say it with me, swish and spit. This treatment also works well for canker sores.
So, there are some tried and true suggestions for curing gingivitis naturally. However, if unsuccessful because the infection has gone too far, then please see a good doctor. If you have severe tooth pain, extremely bad breath, gums that bleed profusely, or badly swollen and inflamed gums, it is time. You should see an improvement in your gum health after a few days with one of the above treatments, but symptoms might take a few days longer to completely disappear.
Best case scenario: you take good care of your mouth and its inhabitants and you never have to worry about gingivitis.
Second best case scenario: you have it and diligently treat it with the above.
Bad scenario, go to a doctor for a more intense treatment. Please do not ignore, as gingivitis is just a prerequisite for very serious problems.
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