According to findings published in the Journal of Periodontology, many women report increased inflammation and discomfort of the gums associated with their menstrual cycle. Symptoms include a slight burning sensation, bleeding with minor irritation, redness to the gums, oral ulcers and general pain and discomfort in the gums.
In this study, researchers compared the gingival and periodontal status of premenopausal women between the ages of 20 to 50 years at different times in their menstrual cycles. Researchers measured plaque index, gingival index, probing depth, gingival recession and gum attachment levels. Gingival inflammation was lower during menstruation than during ovulation and pre-menstruation, which may be attributed to hormonal peaks and drops.
Further studies may determine whether these transitional changes have lasting negative effects on gum health. In the meantime, our female patients in this age bracket should relay symptoms experienced on a cyclical basis to us for notation in their charts. This also includes any prescription or over-the-counter medications being taken.