Multifocal pigmentation on the gums and oral mucus membranes can create an unappealing look, but it’s not a health risk to you or your children. However, if you would like the appearance of your mouth to be more attractive, some simple changes to your daily habits can help you achieve that goal without subjecting yourself to invasive treatments or surgeries.
Smile With Confidence:
A black, brown, or dark-gray appearance of gums or oral mucus membranes may be a function of multifocal pigmentation. Multifocal pigmentation results from melanin deposits within connective tissues including gingival tissue.
The condition is not a health threat. However, many people feel that darkly pigmented gums limit the self-confidence afforded by a bright white smile. People with this condition often ask their dentist how they can whiten their teeth without harming their gum tissue.
To address these concerns, dentists recommend toothpaste designed to remove surface stains while protecting gum tissue from harm.
Xanthelasma is a benign tumor that is made up of a buildup of fat cells. Xanthelasma most commonly occurs around the eyes and near the ears but it can also form on other areas of the body such as arms, stomach, buttocks, legs, hands, and feet.
The oral mucus membrane is located on the inside of our cheeks and lips. The gingiva (gum) is the tissue that covers our teeth and forms a protective barrier between them and outside elements such as bacteria or food particles. People who have darker skin usually have darker gums because they produce more melanin than people with lighter skin who produce less melanin.
Causes Of Darkened Skin:
The skin is composed of two layers, the epidermis, which is on top, and the dermis which is beneath. The epidermis is made up of cells that provide protection from bacteria, ultraviolet radiation, and water loss. These cells are constantly being replaced as they grow old. Beneath this layer, there are blood vessels, nerves, and a layer of fibrous connective tissue called collagen. When these cells are replaced at an increased rate for any reason – for instance as a result of sun exposure or injury – pigments may accumulate more than usual giving rise to hyperpigmentation or darkened skin.
Are They Harmful?
Darkly pigmented gums are not a health threat. However, many people feel that darkly pigmented gums limit the self-confidence afforded by a bright white smile. Below are some facts about multifocal pigmentation in the gums and oral mucus membranes:
- Multifocal pigmentation is caused by melanin, which is what gives skin its color.
- Darker skin has more melanin than lighter skin, which is why darker skin might have darker gum color as well.
- Multifocal pigmentation can also be found on other parts of your body besides just your gumline, like your tongue or inside your cheeks.
- Factors such as smoking cigarettes or drinking coffee can contribute to the darkening of gum color over time.
Treatments For Darkened Skin:
There are many dental treatments for people with dark skin. The most common is teeth whitening, which can be done at home or at a dentist’s office. At-home kits require a person to wear a tray filled with a peroxide solution for about two hours every day for five days before returning to the dentist for an evaluation. If you don’t like that idea, there are other ways of having your teeth professionally bleached, such as using laser or LED light therapy or taking custom fitted mouthguards at night so that you’re not sleeping directly on your teeth.