close up of a woman with something stuck in her teeth

A frequent occurrence for many of our dental patients is itchy feeling in their gums. There are many reasons for such a sensation, from larger health problems to simple oral injuries. It may be difficult to discover which causes may lead to itchy gums, but here at Dugger Dentistry, where we offer the best in dentistry in West Linn, we want to let you know about some of the most common reasons for this condition.

Grinding Your Teeth

As any oral injury can be behind itchy gums, especially open wounds, and a frequent culprit may are teeth grinding, also known as Bruxism. Prolonged tightening or grinding of the teeth can open wounds by eroding enamel and causing the gum line to recede. If the dentist finds that teeth grinding may be the cause of your itchy teeth, they may prescribe a customized mouth guard for you wear when you sleep to keep the bruxism (and itching) from happening.

Gingivitis or Periodontal Disease

A very common cause of itchy gums is often periodontal disease and gingivitis. If you notice that the itchiness you suffer also comes hand-in0hand with bad breathe, receding or sore gums, or bleeding gums, then periodontal disease could be the offender. Also called gum disease, periodontis is a build up of bacteria and tartar that can turn into a severe health problem that needs to handled by a dental expert. If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to serious infections and even loss of teeth. For less serious cases, dentists may prescribe medicated mouthwashes or toothpastes to try to help clear the mouth of the offending bacteria that causes periodontis.

Allergic Reactions

Allergies can also often be a reason for itchy gums. Whether it’s something you may have ingested, or a reaction to medication, or even just hay fever, allergic reactions can be a cause. Some people even get Oral Allergy syndrome, or OAS, which can cause gums to itch and even the tongue, throats or face to swell after eating certain vegetables or fruit or nuts or eggs. Allergic reactions like this can be very uncomfortable and cause swelling or burning in addition to itching. If you suspect an allergy, try cutting out the food that may be the culprit. If itching goes away within a couple of days you will know the reason, but if it still is bothering you, then you should contact a dental professional immediately. Sometimes an allergy to dental fillings or dental equipment can also be to blame.


Itchy gums due to hormonal problems primarily affect women who may be going through puberty, are pregnant, or are going through menopause. At these times of hormonal change, women could experience itchy gums and even heightened gum sensitivity, tenderness, or bleeding. Puberty can result in boosted blood flows to the gums, which can cause itching, while pregnant women may get itchy feelings that can be known as “pregnancy gingivitis”. If you think one of these reason applies to you, make sure to let your dentist know at your next visit.

There are also further possible reasons for itchy gums and they can include: canker sores, teething, viral infections, tooth abscesses, dry mouth, and poor dental hygiene. If you find yourself with itchy gums it is best to see a dentist soon, so that you can understand the reasons and to get you the help you need to alleviate that itchy feeling. As your premiere choice for dentistry in West Linn, the friendly helpful staff and dentists at Dugger Dentistry want you to have a healthy and happy dental health for years to come.

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