Gum disease deserves its own mention as one of the most common diseases causing bleeding gums. There are two main types of gum disease, gingivitis and periodontitis. Of the two, gingivitis is more common and affects up to 70% of New Zealanders. Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums, or gingiva. It typically appears because of a film of plaque and bacteria building up on the teeth. If it’s left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis. Periodontitis affects around 30% of Kiwis. Periodontitis damages the soft tissue and destroys the bone that support your teeth. It’s far more serious than gingivitis and can eventually lead to losing your teeth.