Swollen gums can be caused by gingivitis or as a result of shifting teeth.

When it comes to orthodontic treatments, braces are a highly effective and reliable solution. They can be used to resolve a number of issues related to one’s bite and jaw alignment and typically achieve excellent results. Unfortunately, it is possible to experience swollen gums whilst wearing braces. This issue can be particularly problematic when braces have just been fitted or when they have been adjusted. Read on to find what causes swollen gums with braces and how the problem can be resolved…

What causes the issue?

There are a number of factors that can cause the gums to swell while wearing braces. In some cases, gingivitis can cause swollen gums — when plaque is left to build up on the gums, inflammation can occur. For this reason, it is very important that you practice proper oral hygiene while you have braces and that you brush and floss your teeth regularly.

Another possible cause of swollen gums is the teeth movement that occurs during orthodontic treatment. Braces work by applying continuous pressure to the teeth, which causes the teeth to shift, as well as certain changes to the gums and jawbone. It is possible to experience gum swelling and some discomfort when you first get braces or any time they need to be adjusted. This is a completely normal side-effect and should subside with time.

How can swollen gums be treated?

If you experience swollen gums during your orthodontic treatment, there are a number of ways in which the issue can be managed. Your orthodontist may recommend that you take an over-the-counter medication formulated to ease inflammation and pain. It can also be helpful to rinse your mouth with warm salt water to soothe any discomfort that you feel.

If you are suffering from swollen gums, it is a good idea to avoid particularly hard and chewy foods, which may exacerbate any sensitivity you are experiencing. Also, try and avoid eating foods that can easily get stuck in your braces as it can be difficult to clean braces. Foods that are best avoided include hard and chewy candy, popcorn and tough meat.  

Good oral hygiene is also key when it comes to reducing inflammation of the gums — we recommend that you brush your teeth twice a day and that you floss at least once a day. Rinsing with an anti-bacterial mouthwash can be a helpful addition to your routine. Proper oral hygiene will reduce your risk of swollen gums while you have braces and help to reduce swelling if it does occur.

How can we help?

At Straight Orthodontics, we offer a range of orthodontic treatments, including conventional and ceramic braces. Conventional metal braces are highly effective and can resolve many issues, including some complex problems. Ceramic braces work in the same way as traditional braces but are more discreet as they are made from fine tooth-coloured porcelain material. Ceramic braces are virtually invisible and, although they work more slowly than metal braces, they can be used to treat a range of complex malocclusions and bite issues.

To find out more about the braces that we offer at Straight Orthodontics, please have a look here.

If you would like to make an appointment to see us, please don’t hesitate to get in touch or give us a call on 03 9585 8000. We look forward to helping you achieve a healthy smile!