bleedinggums 300x197 Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part1

Swollen Gums © periotherapy.com

Lumps and swelling in the mouth is common and easily detected by our tongue. Most would choose to ignore them but some would examine their mouths out of curiosity and some through fear (perhaps of the thought of ‘mouth cancer’). Many different conditions may present as oral lumps and swellings so try not to jump into any conclusions until you get a confirmation from your dentist.

Lumps in the gums can be caused by:

1)      Abscesses

Tooth abscess is one of the most common causes of oral swelling. An abscess is a localized collection of pus surrounded by inflamed tissue located on the gums around the tooth. It usually originates from a bacterial infection due to tooth decay or severe periodontal disease but a failed root canal therapy treatment can also lead to abscess formation.

Management: Drainage of pus and antibiotic medications. Causative factors should be removed.

2)      Amyloidosis

551180 xlarge 300x196 Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part1

Amyloidosis © Michael Kahn, D.D.S.

A disorder characterized by deposit of amyloid (a waxy translucent complex protein resembling starch that results from degeneration of tissue) in organs or tissues and is often secondary to chronic rheumatoid arthritis, tuberculosis or multiple myeloma.

Management: Symptomatic treatment.

3)      Chronic gingivitis

Chronic gingivitis is the term used for the inflammation of gums and is generally due to the long-term effects of plaque deposits. Chronic gingivitis can be seen in most of the population and it is characterized by tender, swollen, red gums that bleed easily and may be responsible for bad breath in some cases.

Management: Practice good oral hygiene with proper tooth brushing techniques, floss and mouthwash. Make regular appointments with your dentist to ensure your mouth stays healthy.

4)      Cysts

GingivalCyst1 Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part1

Gingival Cyst © StudyStack

Gingival cysts can appear in newborns (Bohn’s nodules, Epstein pearls) or adults. Both cysts are usually painless swellings on the gums and could arise from developmental remnants.

Management: The majority of newborn cysts break by themselves, a few days after birth though some may remain for several months. Cysts in an adult can be surgically removed.

5)      Drugs

A range of drugs can produce gum swelling. Most commonly phenytoin (for epilepsy), ciclosporin (an immunosuppressive drug) and calcium-channel blockers (especially nifedipine, mainly used as anti-hypertensive agents).

Management: Practice good oral hygiene and usage of a chlorhexidine mouthwash may be helpful. Enlarged tissues can be excised but gum enlargement will tend to reoccur unless the drug has been stopped. The physician may be willing to substitute another drug to treat the medical problem.

6)      Exostoses

Exostoses are benign outgrowths from bone and are usually seen like protrusions from the gums.

Management:  No treatment needed unless obstructive to daily life.

7)      Fibrous epulis

500075 fx7 300x195 Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part1

Epulis fissuratum © 2008 Elsevier, Inc.

The peripheral “fibroma” also called fibrous epulis or peripheral fibrous hyperplasia is a localized mass of tissue that generally develops on the gums between teeth and mostly affects women. It could be due to trauma and there are usually no symptoms.

Management:  Surgical removal of the tissue mass.

To be continued in Part2.

Painful gums? Red, white or pigmented gums? Read more about the various causes for them here and here.

  1. Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part2
  2. Causes of Red, White or Pigmented Gums
  3. Causes of Sore Gums
  4. What is Deep Gum and Root Cleaning?
  5. All about gum disease Part 1


2 Comments

  1. j h guyton
    Posted December 11, 2011 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been wearing dentures for nearly 60 years with no problems–put them in & go. Lately I’ve had gum swelling and can’t wear my teeth. I tried using goo & it helps but still have irritation and swelling even if I only wear them when I go out. l took a round of penicillin to no avail. There is no bleeding or external damage obvious. I take warfarin, atenolol, levothyroxine, Lasix, meclizine, and spironolactone for brain, heart. and liver damage. Could any of these drugs be affecting my gums?

  2. oileng
    Posted December 13, 2011 at 2:03 am | Permalink

    Thank you for your feedback. From what I know of, those drugs that you mentioned have very low possibility of causing swollen gums. It is best you consult a dental professional to inspect your mouth condition.

6 Trackbacks

  1. By Causes of Sore Gums | Intelligent Dental on September 20, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    [...] swollen gums and lumps? Red, white or pigmented gums? Read more about the various causes for them here and [...]

  2. [...] Painful gums? Have swollen gums and lumps? Read more about the various causes for them here and here. [...]

  3. [...] Causes of Gum Swellings and Lumps Part2 Hello there! If you are new here, you might want to subscribe to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet BoxContinued from Part1. [...]

  4. [...] and swelling of the gums in the affected [...]

  5. [...] Chronic gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) is the initial stage of chronic periodontitis but having gingivitis does not necessary lead to periodontitis given that you have good oral hygiene. Some may complain of bleeding gums or an unpleasant taste if gingivitis persists. Later on, gum recession or teeth loosening becomes obvious. The gum margins become purplish-red, swollen and flabby and the gum tissues between the teeth gets destroyed leaving gaps in between teeth. Bleeding from the gum margins can occur when pressure is applied on it and sometimes pus can ooze out from the gum tissues at the necks of the teeth. Periodontitis is also a common cause for bad breath. © Topnews.in [...]

  6. [...] swollen, or red [...]

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