Is Gum Disease a Symptom of Something Else?

It is common to believe that all gum disease is caused by poor oral hygiene. It is in many cases. However, red or swollen gums can be an indication of other health issues unrelated to oral hygiene.

Gum disease is indicated by unhealthy gums.

Most people are unlikely to be concerned about mouth sores and swollen gums because they are fairly common. The truth is that taking them seriously can help detect illnesses in their early stages.


Lupus can cause sores and ulcers on the gums. These types of gum abnormalities are often overlooked because they are not always painful. While some canker sores are not symptoms of a disease, it is still beneficial to see a dentist if the condition occurs frequently or does not heal.

Cardiovascular disease

According to the Harvard Heart Letter, plaque buildup on teeth and gums may be linked to plaque buildup in the arteries. People who have gum disease are at least twice as likely to suffer from a stroke, heart attack, or other serious cardiovascular problems. While a direct link has not been established, chronic inflammation, such as that seen in gingivitis, is known to play a role in atherosclerosis.

Celiac disease

Crohn’s disease is an autoimmune disease that causes immune system weakness. Because the body is more vulnerable to bacteria when it is weakened, the first areas to be affected are frequently those that are more easily exposed to bacteria, such as the mouth. Food and beverages consumed throughout the day contain and nourish bacteria that, if left on the gums, can quickly cause inflammation. Gums that swell and form ulcers despite good oral hygiene can be an early sign of an autoimmune condition like Crohn’s disease.

High blood pressure

Gum disease can be caused by both high blood pressure and some blood pressure medications. Swollen or bloody gums are common in people with high blood pressure. A blood pressure test may be recommended if the gums are inflamed or easily bloodied.


Diabetes can reduce the amount of blood that reaches the gums, causing them to swell, turn red, and even pull away from the teeth. This is especially concerning because periodontal disease can lead to high blood pressure, which can lead to diabetic complications. People who exhibit symptoms of gum infection may benefit from a diabetes screening.


Gum disease can be identified by swollen, inflamed gums. Periodontal disease can be the body’s way of indicating other more serious underlying conditions, rather than just a lack of oral hygiene. Furthermore, gum problems caused by poor oral hygiene can lead to health problems, so taking good care of the gums can have a direct impact on the body’s overall health. It is important to schedule an appointment with Memorial City Dentistry.