White gums, and other colors like red and blue can indicate inflammation or disease. Healthy gums usually have a color that has been described as “coral pink”. Normal racial pigmentation can make the gums appear darker however.
Thrush is a fungal disease identified by raised white areas on the tongue that look like milk curds. When lightly scraped off, these areas reveal sore tissue that tends to bleed easily.
The soft white spots begin on the tongue, but spread to the gums, palate, tonsils, throat and elsewhere. Thrush is caused by a fungus called Candida albicans. The following can reduce your resistance to infection and raise your chances of getting thrush, and ending up with white gums:
- Taking antibiotics or steroid medications
- Having HIV infection or AIDS
- Receiving chemotherapy for cancer
- Suppression drugs following an organ transplant
- Being very old or very young
- Being in poor health
- Having diabetes
Many of the most common at-home bleaching kits are available over-the-counter today. While this method is relatively inexpensive, there are costs associated with its use: side effects include irritation and white gums.
The ones to avoid for sure are the “whitening strips” and the brush on whiteners, as these have proven to be mostly ineffective over the long haul, and do not come close to replicating the process that takes place in your Dentist’s office.
In place of these types of kits, you can have your dentist set up a custom-made tray for your mouth and supply you with the tooth whitener: you’ll still be doing it yourself at home and avoiding the price of professional whitening.
Better still, Dr. Harold Katz of the California Breath Clinics has just released a complete home kit that contains the same types of trays and whitening solutions that most Dentists use at a tiny fraction of the price. Click the link to learn more about the TheraBrite Plus Deluxe Whitening Kit.
Keeping Your Gums Healthy
- Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. The size and shape of your brush should fit into your mouth, allowing you to reach all areas easily.
- Floss every day, if possible before bedtime, so food particles can’t stay in the mouth while you sleep – the time when salivary flow is greatly decreased.
- Go to your dentist regularly
- Eat a well-balanced diet
- Don’t use tobacco products
Cleaning between the teeth with floss and inter-dental cleaners also removes plaque from between the teeth, areas where the toothbrush can’t reach.