Black Spots on Gums, Near Tooth, Between Teeth, Photos Causes, Treatment

Black spots on gums can be annoying and really embarrassing. What causes the dark spots on gum near or between your teeth? These spots near the gum line could be as a result of smoking. In the post, we explore in length this subject matter including how to get rid.

Black Spots on Gum Pictures

Black Spots on Gum Pictures

What causes black spots on gum?

Black spots on gums are rarely a cause for concern. Most are minor and will clear without treatment, it is, however, worth investigating to rule out the chances of the spot being a malignant melanoma, a type of oral cancer that can be fatal.

Here are some of the possible causes of black or dark spots on your gums.

1. Bruises

A bruise on gums as a result of a trauma or an injury can appear as a dark mark on the gums, on the tongue and at times on the roof of the mouth. After an injury, the blood vessels occurring in your gum can burst, causing blood to get trapped under the skin.

Anybody can have a bruise, with some bruising appearing with little pain. Urgent treatment may be required if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Increased bruising
  • Swelling and pain on the affected parts
  • Bruising for no reason
  • Bleeding gums, tongue or mouth

2. hyper-pigmentation

Hyper-pigmentation as a result of too much melanin pigment can also cause the development of dark spots in mouth, gums and on the tongue. Though this could occur on its own, it is often a genetically inherited trait.

Common in people with dark skin, hyperpigmentation is rarely a cause for concern. You can, however, have the dark spots removed using laser therapy. The spots are also referred to as melanin spots.

3. Plaques

Plaques are a hard sticky deposit that can be attached to the teeth.  Without proper oral hygiene, his particles may continue to accumulate causing black spots on gums. Hard plaques on gums are also referred to as calculus or tartar.

Regular appointments with the dentists and regularly brushing your teeth can help prevent this from happening. Failure to do this can cause teeth discoloration and bad breath.

4. Malignant melanoma

Malignant melanoma is a type of skin cancer that can lead to the formation of dark spots not only on skin but also on the gum, inside mouth and on the roof of mouth. Though malignant melanoma is the most common form of cancer, it rarely affects your mouth.

Malignant melanoma is common in people who smoke, it can be a single dark spot that slowly grows over time to form a tumor. Urgent and proper medical examination and treatment are required. You need to be on the watch for color, shape and size changes of the spot.

5. Amalgam tattoos  

Amalgam tattoo is discoloration on gums that are a result of particles of silver filling rooting in the soft tissues of the gums. Amalgam tattoo is also referred to as localized argyrosis or focal argyrosis. It can be seen as a blue, grey or black area of discolorations on the mucous membrane of the mouth.

Amalgam tattoo is common on the gums of the lower jaw. It is common and harmless but can in most cases be mistaken for melanoma.  A Proper medical examination may be required to distinguish the two. Since the lesion is benign, no treatment is often required.

6. Stevens-Johnson syndrome

This is a type of severe skin reaction. Early signs of this condition include fever and flu-like symptoms, the skin including the e mucous membrane that lines the inside of mouth can begin to blister and peel forming painful raw areas.

According to mayo clinic, this is a medical emergency that requires hospitalization. Treatment focuses on treating the underlying cause, managing the symptoms and reducing the risk of complications.

Black spots on gums near tooth

Black spots on gums near tooth can be leukoplakia.  These are often thickened white patches that form on gums, inside cheeks on the flow of mouth and in some cases on the tongue. Leukoplakia can’t be scraped off.

The actual cause of leukoplakia is unknown, but dentist considers chronic irritation from tobacco the main cause of its development. Though most cases of leukoplakia patches are benign, some might show early signs of cancer.

A type of leukoplakia known as hairy leukoplakia or oral hairy leukoplakia is common in people whose immune system have been weakened by disease. Leukoplakia can be shown by the following symptoms:

  • Thickened or hardened area
  • Raised lesions
  • White or grayish patches

Leukoplakia generally is harmless, there is a risk however that the patches can become cancerous.  Your dentist may require a biopsy to rule out the possibility of the patches being cancerous.

Black spots on gums between teeth

Erythroplakia is the other possible cause of the dark patches in mouth. This is a red patch that may be found in any part of the mouth, it is, however, common on the floor of mouth and on the gum tissues behind the back teeth.

Like oral leukoplakia, the cause of erythroplakia is not known but doctors attribute it to chronic tobacco and alcohol use. Other contributors of this condition are chronic irritation and poor nutrition.

Though erythroplakia is less common than leukoplakia, most of the patches are found to be precancerous. This condition does not cause discomfort when it does, it can be a sign of something serious. We recommend you see your dentist if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Sore in mouth that won’t heal or go away
  • White lumps or dark patches
  • Difficulty opening your mouth

Black spots on teeth near gum line

Spots on teeth near your gum line can be caused by the following oral condition.

Lichen planus

Lichen planus is an inflammatory condition that can affect the skin, hair, and the mucous membrane of the mouth.  Unlike on the skin, in the mouth, the area affected with lichen planus forms lacy white patches and in some cases painful sores.

Lichen planus can be shown by blisters, painful sores, itching and patches in mouth, gums. Lips and on tongue.


Also called tartar, this is a form of hardened dental plaques. Calculus is caused by precipitation of minerals from saliva and gingival crevicular.

The precipitation kills bacterial cells within dental plaques. The rough and hard surface formed providers an ideal surface for further formation of plaques. This is what leads to calculus buildup that appears as dark spots on gum.

Brushing with toothpaste with zinc citrate has been shown to reduce the accumulation of plaques. Proper treatment may, however, be required in cases where calculus may form without plaque deposits, this is possible as a result of direct mineralization of pellicle.

Black spots on gums near wisdom tooth

Spots on gums near wisdom teeth can be a sign of pericoronitis, and condition marked by inflammation of the soft tissues surrounding the crown of a partially erupted tooth.

Pericoronitis is often associated with partially erupted and impacted lower wisdom teeth. It occurs at the age of wisdom tooth eruption. Apart from the dark spots on gums, this condition can be shown by the following symptoms:

  • Bleeding Gums
  • Puffy or swollen gums
  • Receding gums that make your teeth look longer
  • Spaces between your teeth
  • Pain while chewing

Periodontitis can be of three types, chronic, aggressive or necrotizing which is characterized by death of gum tissue, ligaments and support bone. It is caused by lack of blood supply that results in severe infection.

Black spots on gums photos

Below are the photos of black spots on gums.

Black Spots on Gum Photo

Black Spots on Gum Photo

Black spots on gum near teeth

Black spots on gum near teeth

Painful Black spots on gums

In most of the cases, mouth sores are often painful, annoying and unpleasant to look at. Often the black spots can appear in the mouth, on gums, tongue, inner cheeks, and lips and on roof of mouth also known as the palate.

Painful spots can also appear outside the mouth and around the lips, under the nose and in some cases on the chin. These painful spots can be a sign of a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection.  Other causes would include:

  • Poorly fitted dentures
  • Irritation form broken tooth or filling
  • Allergic reactions to toothpaste or mouthwash
  • Oral or systemic diseases
  • Medication side effects

Black spots on gums from smoking

Excessive smoking and use of tobacco product is the other possible cause of those dark spots on your gums. Smoking is said to be the cause of malignant melanoma, this is the deadliest form of skin cancer, it is however rarely found in the mouth. According to the United States National Library of Medicine, oral malignant melanoma accounts for about 8% of all melanoma.

The risk of developing oral melanoma increases if you smoke, chew tobacco or drink heavily. Oral melanoma will often start as a small black spot which grows slowly with an irregular shape and uneven edges.

For heavy smokers, oral melanoma is often fatal. It may go unnoticed until it reaches an advanced stage. Without treatment, the survival rate is on average 2 years. To prevent this, you need to stop smoking and cut your consumption of tobacco products. A regular oral checkup can also help detect the growths at an early stage.

How to treat black or dark spots on gums

Not all case of dark gums are serious, however, they can be unsightly and embarrassing to have. When the underlying cause is a medical condition, then treating that condition is the best way to get rid of the spots.

There is, however, something you can do at home to get rid of the dark spots and turn your gum pink and strong. Some of these ways include:

1. Brushing your teeth twice a day

Observing proper oral or dental hygiene is the best way to protect not only your gums but also your teeth. When brushing your teeth, ensure you follow the proper way, do not be too abrasive, or use harsh toothpaste or mouthwash that can that can damage your gums.

The best practice would be to brush your teeth after meals, this way you stop plaques from accumulating between your teeth and under your gum.

2. Flossing

Flossing is the other way to keep your teeth and gums clean and free from germs. If you are just starting out with this option, it is normal to notice your gums bleed, this is not to say you have to stop. We recommend you floss at least twice a day to keep your gums clean, strong and healthy.

3. Deep teeth cleaning

This is a specific procedure performed by a dental hygienist to treat your gums and periodontal disease. The procedure is often done because a person has not had regular professional cleaning for long.

This procedure involves removing plaques and tartar from the surface of the teeth and from the pocket area between the teeth and gums. Deep teeth cleaning (scaling and root planning) can be done using an electric ultrasound or manually.

4. Green tea

You can also get rid of the dark spots naturally using green tea.  Green tea is said to be a rich in antioxidants. It is known to treat numerous oral disease including reducing dark gum, inflamed gum, and clear bacterial infections.

Try a cup of green tea every morning to keep your gums strong and healthy.

5. Sesame oil

Sesame oil is the other alternative you can use to naturally remove toxins. When used on dark gums, sesame oil can help lessen the plaque buildup and also strengthen your gums.

  • Swish your mouth with ¼  a cup of sesame oil
  • To make even more effective warm the oil a little

6. Coconut oil

Coconut oil is the other great remedy you can treat the gums. Apart from treating infected gums, using coconut oil can help treat receding gums and the underlying cause.

Applying coconut oil on gums adds a layer of protection to your gums to protect against bacterial infection.

You can prevent the dark spots on gums by:

  • Maintain proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing your teeth regularly
  • Cutting your consumption of tobacco products smoking and excessive alcohol consumption
  • Having regular dental checkups, this possible to detect early signs of disease
  • Cutting down on consumption of carbonated beverages


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  2. Black spots on gums:
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  4. Causes of dark spots on human gums:
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  6. Treating black gums: