Your dentist may treat gingivitis in several ways, but the first step is to thoroughly clean your teeth, removing all traces of plaque and tartar — a procedure known as scaling. The cleaning may be uncomfortable, especially if your gums are already sensitive or you have extensive plaque and tartar buildup.
Gingivitis usually clears up after a professional cleaning as long as you continue to follow a program of good oral hygiene at home. Your dentist may recommend using an antiseptic mouth rinse in addition to brushing and flossing.
At first your gums may bleed after brushing, but this usually lasts just a few days. If you persist, you should see pink, healthy gum tissue in a short time. You’ll need to practice good oral hygiene for life, however, so your gum problems don’t return. Because misaligned teeth and poorly fitting crowns and bridges make it harder to remove plaque, your dentist may recommend fixing these problems as well.