Gingivitis is a disease that affects the gums, causing them to be painful and inflamed. Some of the most obvious symptoms of this gum disease include redness at the site of infection, swelling and overall irritation in the area around the affected gum. Sometimes, gingivitis is accompanied by bad mouth odor and tender gums that bleed often especially when brushing one’s teeth.
The possibility of complications arising from gingivitis is attributed to the fact that the disease creeps on in a very subtle manner, and may be difficult to detect at the onset. Left untreated, gingivitis gives way to periodontitis, a more serious disease of the gum. The risk of tooth loss from the latter is much higher, making it important to treat gingivitis as soon as possible.
Some of the factors that contribute to gingivitis include poor dental hygiene and plaque that is left untreated. As a result of the latter, a number of the remedies recommended for the natural treatment of gingivitis tend to overlap with those suggested for plaque. As with any other natural remedy, the most important thing to consider is to make the treatment regular if it is to have any positive effect on managing this gum disorder. The first, and most fundamental remedy is to maintain proper oral hygiene as described below.
1. Maintaining Proper Oral Hygiene:
Time Required: 20 Min at a go
What You Need: Dental floss, toothpaste and toothbrush, warm water, and mouth wash (optional).
Maintaining proper oral hygiene is the most elemental remedy for the treatment of gingivitis. There are a number of steps that you can take to prevent and treat this mild gum disease right at the onset. Listed below are some of these preventive measures. It is advisable to consider each of the steps at least twice daily or more depending on when you brush your teeth.
- Make sure you floss your teeth prior to brushing your teeth. The purpose of doing this is to ensure that all food debris is effectively removed from in between the teeth.
- After flossing, take a sip of water, swish it in your mouth and spit. This helps dislodge any accumulated food particles further, particularly those that may not have been eliminated during flossing.
- Wet your toothbrush and place a dollop of toothpaste on it. Brush your teeth in gentle motions, making sure that you focus on the inner and outer surfaces of the tooth as well as the gum region.
- Spit once more and proceed to rinse your mouth using warm water.
- After about an hour or so, you may use mouthwash to rinse. Mouthwash is not recommended for immediate use after brushing for the simple reason that it eliminates the fluoride present. Fluoride plays a key role in protecting the structural integrity of the tooth enamel. By stripping the fluoride away, your teeth are at risk of acid attack that predisposes your gums to inflammation.Note that as a general guide, always choose mouthwash that has antibacterial effects to prevent the proliferation of bacteria in the gum, thus preventing its infection.
- Lastly, change your toothbrush every three months. This is important because it ensures that the toothbrush remains effective with regular usage.
2. Tea Tree Oil:
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: Tea tree oil, a dropper, toothbrush, and toothpaste.
Tea tree oil is a popular home remedy for the treatment of varied bacterial infections, thanks to its potent antiseptic and antibacterial healing properties. When applied on the affected gums, the oil helps eliminate the causative agent of the gingivitis. The only thing that you must remember is that the tea tree oil must not be used in its undiluted state as it is very strong.
The easiest way to get this done is to add it to your regular amount of toothpaste then brushing as normal. Secondly, tea tree oil, even when dilute, must never be ingested as this poses the risk of severe stomach pains and abdominal discomfort.
- Use the dropper to suck the oil and then place a dollop of toothpaste on a wet toothbrush.
- Place 2 drops of tea tree oil on the toothpaste and use this mixture to brush your teeth.
- Brush as you normally would, focusing on the inner and outer surfaces of the teeth while not forgetting the gum.
- After about 5 minutes, spit the mixture. It is extremely important that you do NOT swallow the mixture as tea tree oil is toxic when taken internally.
- Rinse your mouth with a sip of warm water. Use this remedy at least once daily to effectively treat gingivitis naturally.
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 2 Tablespoons of turmeric powder, tablespoons of neem powder, 1/4 teaspoon of alum powder, and a pinch of salt.
Turmeric has long been used to relieve pain and inflammation, making it an effective choice for the herbal remedies used in the treatment of gingivitis. These healing properties are attributed to the presence of curcumin, a potent active ingredient. Neem powder is added for its excellent antibacterial properties, while the alum powder is added to ensure the stability of the paste.
Salt is included in this remedy as it is a simple yet effective disinfectant. The combination of all the ingredients allows for efficient healing of the gum disease. Follow the directions below to prepare the turmeric paste. You may opt to prepare the remedy in batches for daily use as these remedies do not have any preservatives included.
- Mix all the ingredients together and transfer to an air-tight container to prevent oxidation which reduces the remedy’s efficiency.
- Whenever you need to use the remedy, simply take a teaspoon of the mixture and apply on the infected gum.
- Massage the gum in gentle motions, while making sure that the gum is covered in entirety.
- You may rinse with warm water. Use this remedy thrice daily to get rid of gingivitis.
4. Fresh Lemon Juice:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1 Medium sized lemon, 1 glass of warm water, and a juicer.
Fresh lemon juice (and just about any of the citrus fruits) is recommended for the treatment of gingivitis, thanks to the presence of Vitamin C which enhances this remedy’s anti-inflammatory properties. The juice also has the benefit of boosting the body’s immune system, making it easier to eliminate the gum infection. For this remedy, it is important to note that quite a number of people cannot stand the acidic taste of this remedy. In such cases, the best thing to do is to half the amount of lemon juice used in order to retain its healing properties while reducing its acidity.
- Roll the lemon on a hard working surface and then wash before slicing into two halves.
- Juice the two halves and collect the juice in a glass.
- Pour in the hot water and mix the two liquids. As mentioned above, if you are concerned about the extreme acidity, simply use half the amount of the total juice collected.
- Rinse your mouth using this solution. The best time to do this is immediately after brushing your teeth in the morning.
5. Baking Soda:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Baking soda and a wet toothbrush. 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 glass of warm water (optional, used to prepare mouthwash).
Baking soda is naturally alkaline, and it is this property that is at display as far as the natural treatment of gingivitis is concerned. In this gum disease, an unbalanced pH allows for the growth of bacterial populations, thus creating the risk of gum infection. When baking soda is added to toothpaste or used to prepare homemade mouthwash, the result is the restoration of optimal pH. this, in turn, makes it impossible for bacteria to survive in the mouth. There are two simple ways in which you can use this remedy. You may either brush with the baking soda or opt to prepare mouthwash.
Preparing homemade mouthwash using baking soda:
- Add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to 1 tablespoon of table salt and mix well.
- Place the mixture in a glass and pour in 1 cup of warm water.
- Stir the mixture and allow to cool or until the bubbling stops (this is perfectly normal and is attributed to the effervescent nature of baking soda).
- Rinse your mouth using this remedy daily, preferably twice daily.
Brushing using the baking soda:
- Add a few drops of warm water to 1 teaspoon of baking soda to create a paste.
- Scoop some of the paste using a wet toothbrush and brush for a couple of minutes.
- Rinse your mouth. Use this remedy once every two days. This is key because when used in excess, baking soda has the capacity to strip of the tooth enamel, thus allowing for further advancement of gingivitis within the gum.
6. Oil Pulling:
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: 2 Teaspoons of Sesame/Coconut oil and 2 glasses of warm water.
Oil pulling is an ancient technique used to ensure proper oral hygiene, and it is little wonder therefore, that this remedy is recommended for the treatment of gingivitis. Sesame and coconut oil are both loved for their excellent antibacterial properties. When used for the natural treatment of gingivitis, the oil pulls all the toxins and bacteria from the gums, hence the name oil pulling. Other benefits of using this remedy is that the oil not only speeds up the healing process, it is also an ideal immune booster.
- Place the oil in your mouth and swish it so that every part of the gum gets into contact with the oil.
- At the onset, you may be able to do this for only 60 seconds. With regular use however, you should be able to perform oil pulling for up to 10 minutes at a go.
- After this time has elapsed, spit the mixture and rinse your mouth using the warm water. Caution must be exercised to ensure that the oil mixture is not swallowed as this would simply mean ingesting the toxins and bacterial load in the mouth.
- Use this remedy daily. The best time for oil pulling if first thing in the morning even before you brush your teeth.
Time Required: 40 Min
What You Need: Dried peppermint leaves, a bowl of warm water. Alternatively, use peppermint teabag and a glass of hot water.
One of the most common symptoms of gingivitis is bad mouth odor. If you are looking for a remedy that both eliminates the bacteria present as well as the bad breath, your go-to remedy is peppermint. Peppermint is best known for its refreshing smell, but it is also an effective antibacterial which is why it is used to treat gingivitis. You may use the peppermint leaves or opt for a simpler remedy by using peppermint tea.
Using Peppermint Leaves:
- Place the leaves in a bowl and add water so that it covers all the leaves.
- Allow the leaves to soak for half an hour and then pass through a strainer.
- Discard the leaves and use the resulting solution as mouthwash at least thrice daily.
Preparing Peppermint Tea:
- Simply place the peppermint teabag in a cup of hot water and steep for 5 minutes.
- Allow the tea to cool and drink it twice daily for best results.
Additional home remedies that you can use to treat gingivitis include cloves which are effective for gum disease, guava leaves as well as aloe vera from a freshly cut leaf. Anyone can get this gum disease, so in addition to the aforementioned home remedies, you must make sure that you get regular dental checkups. If the symptoms associated with gingivitis do not subside after a few days, get immediate medical attention from a professional dentist.