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Therapeutics in Dermatology
A reference textbook in dermatology
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19 October 2015, by LE ROUX-VILLET C. & PASCAL F.



Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums or gingivia. When you suffer from gingivitis, your gums are usually red, sometimes swollen, and you may have sores. The symptoms that you will usually have are pain and bleeding, and these may happen spontaneously or be triggered by eating or brushing.


Your doctor will firstly determine the cause of your gingivitis. You may need to have a full clinical examination, specialised examinations, and a panoramic dental x-ray.

You will be prescribed treatment for your gingivitis according to what is causing it. This will often consist of care backed up by dental hygiene and topical treatments.


Dental hygiene and care is crucial because when done properly, you may not need any other treatment for your gingivitis to get better if it is caused by the presence of dental plaque. In all cases, it helps to prevent the formation of dental plaque, which worsens the condition of the gums. You should use a toothbrush with soft bristles. If your gums are painful when you brush or eat, do not hesitate to speak to your doctor who can prescribe a local anaesthetic for you to apply a few minutes beforehand, and this will make brushing and eating easier. You can also use a children’s toothpaste, as this will produce less of a burning sensation. Just as with dental hygiene, you should carry out topical treatments carefully, even if you find them to be inconvenient. If a mouthwash is prescribed, you should keep it in your mouth for as long as possible before spitting it out, preferably after you brush your teeth. Mouthwashes are never a substitute for brushing. Adhesive gels or ointments can be applied after mouthwash or brushing. If your gingivitis does not get better, you will need to see your doctor again.

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