3 Surprising Reasons For Gum Pain

Whether you wear clear braces or metal braces, your gums need to healthy in order for your dental appliances to "work their magic." While many cases of gum pain are attributed to gingivitis, there are other, less common causes. Here are three reasons you may be experiencing gum pain and what you can do about them:

Sinus Infection

If you experience nasal congestion, post nasal drip, a bad taste in your mouth, or loss of smell, you may have a sinus infection. Though these are the most common symptoms of chronic or acute sinus infections, dental and gum pain may also be present.

Sinus infections, because they cause sinus cavity inflammation, can place pressure on the top row of your teeth and gums. If you develop a sinus infection after recovering from a cold or the flu, see your physician.

If he or she determines that your infection is bacterial in nature rather than viral, you may need to take antibiotics. You will also need to see your dentist or orthodontist if your braces are irritating your inflamed gum tissue.

Low Levels Of Vitamin C

If you do not get enough vitamin C through dietary measures or from taking supplements, your levels may be low. Vitamin C plays a prominent role in the development of healthy gum tissue, and if you are deficient, your gums may become sore and bleed.

Eating citrus fruit such as oranges and grapefruit, and consuming green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale can help you meet your recommended daily allowance for vitamin C.

Getting enough vitamin C may also reverse existing gingivitis by reducing inflammation, diminishing bleeding, and clearing bacteria from your mouth. Do not take mega doses of vitamin C because too much can cause abdominal cramping, diarrhea, bladder pain, and heartburn. Large doses of this essential nutrient may also raise your risk for enamel erosion of your teeth.


If you are a woman nearing menopause, your estrogen levels may be declining. Like vitamin C, estrogen helps promote gum health, and when you are deficient, you may experience gum recession and pain. In addition to this, low estrogen levels may lead to the deterioration of the bones that support your teeth.

If you wear braces, see your dentist, who will examine your teeth to determine if these bones are still strong and healthy. If they are losing density because of low estrogen, your braces may need to be adjusted. Low estrogen levels can be corrected through hormone replacement therapy, however, it is not appropriate for everyone. 

If you have gum pain, make an appointment with your dentist or orthodontist office like Brian Smith Orthodontics. The sooner the source of your gum pain is recognized and treated, the less likely you will be to develop problems with your teeth and braces.