Know What Causes, Treats Receding Gums
- July 26, 2016
There’s a problem that we need to talk about.
It’s not the only oral problem that affects patients who visit our dentist office in Plainville, CT. It may not be the most common problem.
But it is a real concern, and it is something we want you to know about.
It’s called gum recession, and it can happen for a variety of reasons. We will discuss those reasons later, along with what our team at Gentle Dental Care can do to help if you or someone who you care about is dealing with recessed gums.
What Is Gum Recession?
You have probably heard of a receding hairline. This is common among people who are losing their hair.
Over time, the line where their hair starts in the front pushes further and further back on their head.
Receding gums are doing something similar. Over time, they are pulling back more and more from your teeth. This is not a good thing.
If your gums recede too much, then the roots of your teeth can be exposed. Unlike your crowns, which is covered with enamel (the hardest substance on the human body), your roots are covered with cementum. This is still a hard substance but it does not provide the same kind of protection that enamel does.
As you might expect, exposed roots are more likely to be damaged by bacteria and plaque.
Your gum tissue does more than protect your roots, however. Your gums also help to hold your teeth in place. As your gums recede, your teeth could come loose and even fall out.
What Causes Gum Recession?
Gum recession can occur for a variety of reasons. You may have multiple factors contributing to your gum recession.
With that in mind, we want you to know some of the more common causes of gum recession.
▸ Gum disease
We have stressed and will continue to stress the importance of preventive dental care. Brushing your teeth twice a day. Floss between your teeth and under your gums every day. Visit our office twice a year for routine cleanings and examinations.
This will go a long way in preventive periodontal disease, and it makes it more likely that we will identify this problem in the early stages when it can be reversed. As gum disease becomes more advanced, one of the symptoms is gum recession. This also is one of the reasons that gum disease cause more tooth loss than anything else in the United States.
This is much less likely to cause receding gums if you take the steps to avoid gum disease entirely or if you get treatment as soon as possible when you notice the disease has developed.
You can damage your teeth and gums by neglecting your oral hygiene. At the same time, being too aggressive about oral care can be problematic for other reasons.
This is the reason you should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and the reason you should not brush too hard. If your bristles are buckling against your teeth, then you are probably brushing too hard.
When you do this, you can wear down the protective enamel on your teeth, and you can damage your gum tissue. As the tissue gets weaker, it can recede.
This is a factor that you can’t control. Some people are more prone to gum recession than others, and unfortunately, if you are one of them, it may be a family trait.
If gum disease or gum recession runs in your family, then you should pay particular attention to your gums.
Injuries can affect your mouth in a lot of ways, including cause damage to your gum tissue.
How Can Gum Recession Be Treated?
How we treat your receding gums will depend both on the cause and the severity of your condition.
If your gum recession is in the early stage, we may be able to stop it by treating your gum disease and removing any infected tissue.
If you have severe gum recession, then it may be necessary to perform a gum graft to add tissue back where it belongs. Gum grafting involves transplanting gum tissue where it is needed.
This tissue may come from another part of your mouth or from a tissue donor. Either way, as you heal, the tissue will grow together so our teeth with receive the protection they need.
Act Quickly To Stop Receding Gums
If you notice any changes in the position of your gums, then you should call Gentle Dental Care as soon as you can to make an appointment. Our dentist can help you just as he has helped so many people in and around Plainville, CT.