Gum Boil Meaning, Pictures, Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

A gum boil or abscess can be frustrating and more painful especially if the boil is filled with pus. What does a boil on the gum mean? In this post, we have comprehensive details on the meaning, symptoms and causes of a bump on gum. We also have pictures that vividly describes how a boil on gum looks like. Find in the post how you can treat dental abscess naturally at home.

Food particles, bacteria or plaque can get trapped underneath the surface of your gums. This puts you at risk of getting an infection in the root canal and the entire tissues around including the jaw line and bones. Individuals with gum diseases or abscess are likely to develop pockets or gaps located along the gum line.

Image of Gum Boil

Image of Gum Boil

These pockets tend to harbor bacteria when food particles get trapped there in. you are likely to get gum abscess from the infection of bacteria.

What is a gum boil

Gum boil or abscess can be described as various type of swelling and or tissue overgrowth that occur in the mouth especially the gums. If you have a bump on the gum, it may be fluid filed or sometimes made of hard solid fibrous tissues on your gum. The boils on the gum may have a normal color or appear red.


Inner thigh boils

This condition can be associated with dental abscess especially if there is collection of pus. You are likely to have a toothache and other related symptoms which shall be discussed later. If the gum boil is infected with pus filled, you will be subjected to pain that is limited to the infected part of the gum.

Basically there are three major kind of gum line with boils as described below.

Gingival Abscess: this is a type of dental infection where the sac containing the pus is located at the gum line. Bacterial infection is the major cause penetrating into the gums after physical mouth injury or trauma. Food particles tend to stick into the gum line leading gingival abscess. You should seek medical treatment otherwise it can spread to the neighboring tissue causing a damage to the entire gum supporting your teeth.

Periapical Abscess: if there a severe infection at the tip of the base of the tooth, you are at risk of developing periapical abscess. Basically when the soft tissue of your tooth become swollen and develops pus, you get this type of abscess. It can be very painful and tend to spread to the jawbone resulting to loss of tooth and or bone loss. This chronic infection encourages certain fluids accumulation in the root canal.

Periodontal Abscess: if the periodontal pockets is inhabited by a rapid and excessive growth of bacteria, you are prone to develop periodontal abscess. You should visit your dentist for treatment otherwise, this kind of infection can cause severe and irreparable damage to the surrounding bones and ligaments that can eventually lead to loss of tooth.

Gum boil symptoms

What are the symptoms of a boil on the gum? A bump filled with pus on the gum line in mouth may appear in several different forms. It is as a result of a bacterial infection in the tooth and the gum line. The symptoms and signs include:

Symptoms of Gumboil

Signs and Symptoms of a gum line with a boil

  • Soreness and swelling
  • Pain in the root canal
  • Redness within the gum line and mouth
  • Soft swollen and blister filled with blisters
  • Bleeding on the gums and mouth during oral hygiene.
  • A fouls smell in the mouth from discharge of pus.

A chronic gum boil can also cause vomiting, fever and chills. This can be coupled with unsettled stomach. A pimple or lump like bump on the gum is always associated with sharp constant pain. You may opt to apply pressure or warmth on the boil but the pain can be extreme.

Gum boil pictures

How does a boil on the gum look or appear like? You may notice a bump or pimple that resembles a boil on your gum line. It is soft, swollen and painful owing to pus collected in the boil due to infection of bacteria. To help you understand how a boil on the gums appear, we have added images and pictures in the post.

A Picture showing a gum boil filled with pus

A Picture showing a gum boil filled with pus

The photos and images are to help you understand appearance of boils on the gum. In addition, they are aimed to illustrate vividly and provide insightful information to relate well with your symptoms.

What causes gum boils

What causes abscess or boils on gum lines? A gum line with a boil has different varied causes, they can be tumors or infection in the mouth and gum pockets where food debris get trapped. Knowing the cause of gum boils in your mouth helps you to treat them effectively and appropriately. Below here are some of the known causes.

1. Gum boil oral cancer

Is a gum boil a sign of cancer? A lump or mass on the gums can be indicative of several different health conditions. It may be a soft lump as in the case of gum abscess or hard bump located anywhere on the gum. Oral cancer, gum or mouth, or tumor of the teeth or jaw are rare cases of mass on the gums. Oral cancer most commonly affect the lips or the tongue, it may also occur on the cheek lining, the floor of the mouth and roof of the mouth.

If you notice a bump on the gum lining visit your health care provider for examination. Gingiva: cancer of the gums starts as bump on the gum. This is type of squamous cell carcinoma that tends to spread quickly. Heavy smoking of tobacco and excessive consumption of alcohol is linked to the increase risk of oral cancer.

2. Poor dental and oral hygiene.

If you have a poor dental and oral hygiene, you risk developing abscess or a boil on the gum line. Debris of food particles tend to enter the gap between the teeth and gum particularly to someone with gum or periodontal disease. Poor oral hygiene attracts bacterial infection in the mouth and gums.

Abscess which appear as gum boils will form on the infected area. This is a body response mechanism to fight off invasion of bacteria. Pus will collect on the gums, teeth or root canal. Bacterial infection in mouth and gum tend to cause abscess through trauma and decay of the teeth and root canal.

If you have a lowered resistance to infection you are at even higher risk of developing an abscess on the gum. It will start as a severe toothache. If the infection gets deep into the nerves of the tooth and gums, you end up with visible swelling that resemble boils.

Prevention involves good oral hygiene. This simply means you have to keep your teeth and gums clean free from food. You have to start developing a habit of brushing your teeth and mouth regularly. You may also be required to have regular dental checkups to prevent the chances of tooth decay.

3. Tooth decay

Another main cause for swelling on the gum line is tooth decay. If you have tooth decay, the nerves of the tooth die and in the process cause bacterial infection. The body has its defense mechanism against infection; white blood cells are produced in abundance to get rid of the infection and toxins in the affected area.

Tooth decay can be caused by eating a diet rich in sweet and sticky food and drinks including chocolate, sugary and fizzy drinks. Sticky foods tend to collect in the gap between the tooth and gums attracting bacterial infection thus putting you at risk of developing abscess on the gum line and mouth.

Abscess will be formed from dead white blood cells, foreign particles including bacteria and other oral fluids. A visible swelling is thus located on the gum which will heal naturally or medically treated.

4. Weak immune system

Does a weak immune system cause abscess on the gum? Generally, a weak immune system makes you susceptible to bacterial infection. Your body including the gums become prone dental diseases such as periodontitis. A weakened immune system because of medication or any other health condition increases the risk of infection.

A weakened immune system because of a major underlying medical condition such as diabetes and or side effects of medication like steroid can cause abscess on the gum.

You should inform your dentist before any appointment to reduce more risk of oral infections.

Gum boil comes and goes

Do you have a bump on the gum that comes and goes? A boil on the gum that keeps on coming back or won’t go away is a clear indication of infection. It may happen after root canal therapy, implying the infection was never treated completely during the root canal therapy.

Your body is subjected to infections and keeps on constantly fighting the infection. There is a likelihood of infection spreading to the neighboring tissue and bones. You may have a foul smell from your mouth. This can be a never ending cycle of reinfection if left untreated. Taking antibiotics can help fix the problem but you may need to see a dentist for a minor surgery.

Gum boil during pregnancy

Is a pregnancy boil on the gum line normal? Pregnancy is always associated with hormonal changes that tend to increase the risk for developing oral health complications like gingivitis and periodontitis. A certain percentage of women are likely to develop inflammation of the gums and gum diseases.

However, a pregnancy tumor on the gum is not life threatening. It appears in the mouth during the second or third trimester. The tumor can appear as red or purple bump anywhere on the mouth but often visible near the gum line. The bump has a tendency of bleeding easily and may form an open sore.

Pregnancy tumors usually disappear on their own just after conception. However, if the inflammation interferes with eating, visit a dentist or a specialist to have it removed. It is a simple procedure performed under local anesthesia.

Gum boil in child

Gum boil or dental abscess in children can be attributed to numerous causes. It is normal for kids to have swelling on the gum line. If your child has cavities in teeth, it can be one of the main cause of dental abscess. This happens when the tooth is completely rotten. Failure to maintain proper oral hygiene attracts bacterial infection in the mouth and gums, this puts the child at risk of gum inflammation and disease.

A Gum boil in child

A Gum boil in child

How to treat a gum boil

A swelling on the gum can be treated depending on the type of infection causing the boil. There are a variety of home remedies and medical treatment for dental abscess.

1. Periodontal Therapy

If the cause of the abscess on the gum is periodontal disease, you are advised to do a deep cleaning to remove active bacteria from your mouth and in between the gap of the gums and teeth. This can be costly where you will be required to frequently visit the dentist to keep the oral health in check.

2. Root canal therapy

In a case where there is a severe tooth decay including the root canal, complete removal of the enamel will be necessary. This helps to remove the bacteria and infected tooth preventing the risk of infection spreading to the neighboring tissues and bone. The dentist will have to remove the nerves too and infected pulp in the tooth and its root.

After the infected root canal has been removed, the dentist will use various materials to fill the space left.

3. Drainage or surgical removal of abscess

If the gum boils cause discomfort or become cosmetically disgusting, surgery is considered as one of the best alternative. Abscess on the gum can be drained to remove the pus. However, there are chances the boil coming back after the surgery.

4. Realignment of the denture

If the gum problem or abscess is caused by overgrowth or poorly structured dentures, you may opt to have reconstruction of the denture from a professional. This helps to prevent friction or rubbing of the gums causing swellings.

5. Antibiotics for gum abscess

An abscess on the gum can be treated using antibiotics to help fight bacterial infection causing the boil. Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics to help kill the infection in the gum and mouth.

Gum boil home treatment

Swelling on the gum can be treated naturally with simple home remedies. The following is a list of suggestions basing upon the experience that has successfully treated boils on the gum line.

1. Gargle with salty water

Salt is known to be a great remedy or treatment for many infections. It helps to relieve pain and subsequently reducing swelling speeding up the healing process.

  • Add a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water
  • Rinse your mouth with the solution of salt targeting the infected gum
  • Gargle several times a day for about 5 – 10 minutes

Pain will come and go a clear indication the bacteria are killed. You can use a slightly stronger salt solution to kill the bacteria faster.

2. Turmeric paste for boils on the gum.

Turmeric can also help reduce inflammation on the gum and take away the abscess.

Use Turmeric for Gum Abscess

Use Turmeric for Gum Abscess

  • Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder in a glass of water
  • Make a fine paste
  • Clean your mouth with water
  • Apply directly the turmeric paste on the affected area
  • Using cotton swab, hold or press slightly hard the turmeric on the infected gum for 10-15 minutes
  • Rinse with plenty water
  • Do this at least twice daily for some days

3. Garlic juice

Garlic is a natural bacterial killer found at home. The juice from raw garlic can help fight infection fast.

Garlic is a Natural Home Remedy for Gum Infection

Garlic is a Natural Home Remedy for Gum Infection

  • Take raw garlic clove
  • Crush and squeeze to extract juice
  • Apply the juice on the infected area
  • Do this several times a day for good results

4. Oil pulling

This is a quick home remedy to help treat abscess on gum and in root canal of the tooth.

  • Use one table spoon of coconut oil and put it in your mouth
  • Slush for about 20 minutes or so. Do not swallow
  • Spit it out and rinse you mouth
  • Do this several times a day. It provides a relieving effect.

5. Gum boil treatment with hydrogen peroxide mouth wash

you may as well use hydrogen peroxide to treat gum boil and tooth infection. This kind of kind is very effective. here’s how to make a mouthwash out of it:

  • mix equal volume of hydrogen peroxide with water
  • swill it around in your mouth for about 1 minute
  • spit it out
  • repeat this procedure thrice daily
Hydrogen peroxide for Gum Boil

Hydrogen peroxide for Gum Boil


A Video Showing Treatment of Gum Abscesss.