How Long Does It Take for Bleeding Gums to Heal?

You’re working hard to help keep your dental health in check, making sure you brush twice a day, floss regularly and follow the regimen given by your dental professional.

Yet, if you’ve noticed that your gums are red and inflamed every time you brush or bleeding when you floss, you may be alarmed. Learn what may be happening and how long it might take for your bleeding gums to heal.

What Causes Bleeding Gums?

One reason you may see mild bleeding after brushing and flossing is gingivitis, a mild form of gum disease that is easy to treat.1 Leaving plaque on tooth surfaces can cause inflammation of the gums, and the inflammation is what causes the bleeding.3

Another reason for bleeding gums? You’re being a little too rough or not using proper technique when brushing or flossing.3

How Long Does It Usually Take Bleeding Gums to Heal?

If you’re starting a new flossing routine it can take a week or so for your gums to settle down and potentially stop bleeding.2 If you’re dealing with gingivitis, individual prognoses vary, so it’s best to talk with your dentist first. After talking with your dentist, use an anti-gingivitis toothpaste* like Parodontax Complete Protection — which has been shown to significantly reduce plaque and bleeding gums.**

However, if the plaque between your teeth has mineralized and become stuck, you’ll likely need to call in the pros, as you may be dealing with tartar. No amount of brushing or flossing at home will remove tartar, which means you’ll need to have your teeth professionally cleaned.4 Find a dental practice that can help you eliminate your tartar at affordable rates.

Learn How to Floss Effectively

To properly floss, take a piece of floss that’s approximately 18 inches long and wrap most of it around your middle fingers so that there's about an inch of floss when held tight between your hands.4 Then you'll slide the floss between the teeth. There's a small triangle of tissue between each of your teeth — pass the floss on one side of the triangle, hugging the tooth by making a small C shape with the floss, gently allowing it to pass just under the edge of the gums until you feel resistance, and slide the floss up and down a few times to scrub the plaque off the teeth.4

Repeat that same process on the other side of the triangle of tissue before moving to the next tooth.4 Use a new section of floss between each tooth to avoid redepositing the bacteria you’re removing by unrolling floss from one hand and taking up the slack on the other as you move from tooth to tooth.4

Feel like your gums are still bleeding, even after you floss like an expert? Talk to your dentist as there may be an underlying cause that will need some further investigating.

*when used twice daily

**compared to a sodium monofluorphosphate toothpaste after professional cleaning and twice daily brushing.

Source Citations:


  1. Gingivitis. Mayo Clinic. Accessed 6/13/2023.
  2. Bleeding Gums. MouthHealthy. Accessed 6/13/2023.
  3. Bleeding gums. Medline Plus. Accessed 9/18/23.
  4. Flossing. MouthHealthy. Accessed 9/18/23.

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