A healthy set of gums should be pink and stippled, very tight and bound down. They should have little indents in them. Those indents signify a certain amount of health. Consider your gums' relationship to your teeth to be like skin over bones. If you don't nurture them with proper flossing and brushing, they will eventually turn on you. Gums do not take kindly to neglect.
According to the American Academy of Periodontology, more than 75 percent of adults over the age of 35 have some form of periodontal disease. That includes gingivitis and plaque build-up, which is decay. If you let either of these conditions go untreated, you can end up losing your teeth and the bone around them.
In fact, by neglecting your gums, you could end up losing a lot more than your teeth. A mouth with diseased gums can set off influential amounts of bacterial pro-inflammatory components into the bloodstream, which means it can travel to any vital organ and cause serious inflammation there as well. Your red, swollen gums could ultimately give you heart disease.