5 Common Reasons Your Child’s Gums Are Bleeding

If your child’s gums are bleeding, it is not the end of the world, but it is an issue that requires your attention.

A parent never wants to see their child bleeding. You may be afraid at first, but then compose yourself, diagnose the issue, and solve it. What makes gum bleeding so frustrating is that it is hard to decipher why it is happening. If a child falls off their bike and skins their knee, the cause and treatment are obvious. However, with bleeding gums, this is not the case. If your child experiences bleeding gums for an extended period, it is best to visit a St. Louis pediatric dentist. If they have just begun to bleed, you can try to solve it by understanding the common causes.

New Toothbrush

Some toothbrushes have very firm bristles, especially when they are new. If your child has been using a worked in, soft bristle brush for a few months and then switches to hard bristles, it could cause bleeding. You can avoid this by inspecting the new toothbrush carefully. Make sure it comes with soft bristles, rather than hard ones that need to be used to soften. (Read more: Tips on Buying a Toothbrush for Your Child)


If your child has not been flossing regularly and then starts to floss, there is bound to be some bleeding. Don’t let this scare you! When your child doesn’t floss for an extended period, their gums become sensitive and inflamed. When they do start to floss, the gums may bleed a little bit. This is entirely normal and is merely a part of the process of strengthening gums. If you see bleeding, have your child floss every other day for a couple of weeks. After that, they can move on to daily flossing.

Too Much Pressure

Sometimes a child gets carried away with their dental routine and applies too much pressure when brushing or flossing. If you suspect this, watch your child go through their dental routine. If you notice that they are being too aggressive, tell them to lighten the pressure.


If your child has just started taking a new medication, that could be the culprit. Certain medicines tend to sensitize gums, so be careful in administering them. The most common case is when a medication dries a child’s mouth out significantly. Dry mouths are more likely to bleed.

Gum Disease

The worst case scenario is your child having legitimate gum disease. The cause for this is usually poor oral health. Your child is likely not brushing and flossing enough, and the result is a buildup of plaque. That plaque buildup leads to gum disease, which causes bleeding. If you think this might be the case, you will want to see a pediatric dentist for advice.

If your child’s gums are bleeding, it is not the end of the world, but it is an issue that requires your attention. Your first step should be reviewing the simplest common causes and seeing if you can work the issue out yourself. If the problem ends up being more complicated, you can always give The Dental Anesthesia Center a call at (314) 862-7844 to schedule an appointment.

Updated: March 25, 2022

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