Gingivitis literally means inflamed gums. This is a gum disease frequently caused by bacteria and dental hygiene problems. HIV-positive people are more susceptible to gingivitis.

HIV-related gingivitis causes redness and swelling of the gums, loss of gum tissue between the teeth, and sometimes ulcers, bleeding or pain. If untreated it may rapidly progress to HIV-related periodontitis (known as necrotizing ulcerative periodontitis or NUP), or inflammation around the teeth. Soft tissue may be destroyed and the underlying bone exposed, and the bone itself can be destroyed, loosening the teeth and causing severe pain.

Gingivitis needs to be seen by a dentist experienced in HIV care.