Visual Infographic about Gingivitis

20 Fast Facts About Gingivitis

  1. The World Health Organization estimates that out of every 4 adults one has some form of the bacterial infection gingivitis. 
  2. At some point in their lives, 80 percent of adults will experience symptoms of gingivitis.
  3. Of those who have gingivitis, 15 to 20 percent go on to develop the more serious infection periodontitis.
  4. Gum disease in various stages—including gingivitis—affects 47 percent of American adults.
  5. A kiss can transmit over 80 million bacteria, some of which can cause gingivitis and gum disease.
  6. Not all gingivitis progresses to periodontitis; treated early you can protect your oral health from deeper infection.
  7. The best time to get treatment is now. Gingivitis can develop into the more advanced periodontitis—which is costlier and more time consuming to eradicate.
  8. Anyone can get gingivitis, including children and even your pets.
  9. Gingivitis gets its name from the Latin word “gingiva,” the medical term for gums, and “-itis” greek suffix that denotes diseases characterized by inflammation.
  10. The most common cause of gingivitis is the accumulation of plaque on teeth.
  11. Gingivitis can also be the result of a viral or bacterial infection.
  12. Plaque left on the teeth for longer than 72 hours can begin to harden into tartar.
  13. Tartar cannot be removed by brushing or flossing—it requires the skills and tools of a dental professional.
  14. Gingivitis prevention starts with plaque removal by brushing your teeth for two minutes, twice daily, and flossing once a day.
  15. Your toothbrush should be replaced every three months—worn out bristles are less effective at cleaning surfaces from plaque, and bacteria builds up on the bristles over time.
  16. After three months of use, an electric toothbrush can reduce gingivitis by 11%.
  17. When compared to manual toothbrushes, electric toothbrushes also reduce the occurrence of dental plaque by 21%.
  18. Common signs of gingivitis:
    • Bright red, or even purple, gums
    • Gums that are tender to the touch
    • Bleeding from flossing and brushing 
    • Bad breath
    • Swollen gums
    • Receding gums
    • Soft, spongy gum tissue
  19. Healthy gums are:
    • Pink in color
    • Firm and tissue lies flat
    • Pain-free with no bleeding
  20. Factors that can increase your chances of developing gingivitis:
    • Poor dental health habits
    • Tobacco use
    • Dry mouth
    • Genetics
    • Hormonal changes
    • Conditions that compromise the immune system (cancer, HIV/AIDS)
    • Dental restorations that are too big, too small, or loose
    • Poor nutrition


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