Receding gums are a common dental problem. We see many patients who have issues with varying degrees of gum recession, and even though it is not rare, it is still a serious condition that you should not ignore.
Gum recession happens when the gums that are usually snug against your teeth start to pull back or wear away. Eventually, pockets between teeth and gums form, creating a breeding ground for bacteria and plaque. Some of the dangers of untreated receding gums are an infection, potential tooth loss and bone loss in the area where your gums are pulling away from your teeth.
There are several reasons for gum recession, some of these include:
• INADEQUATE BRUSHING AND FLOSSING- Most of our patients know the suggested oral health routine our dentist recommends. We advise patients to brush at least twice a day (although brushing after each meal is preferable) and thoroughly floss at bedtime. These ordinary activities are the first line of defense against numerous dental problems, including receding gums.
• PERIODONTAL DISEASE- Bacteria causes these infections, which are the leading source of gum recession. These infections are preventable, as proper brushing and flossing remove bacteria.
• TOBACCO PRODUCTS- Those patients who use tobacco have a higher amount of sticky plaque on their teeth. The plaque eventually leads to receding gums as well as gum disease and tooth loss.
• CLENCHING AND GRINDING YOUR TEETH- When you grind your teeth or clench your jaw, you are exerting a considerable amount of pressure on your teeth. Often, this persistent pressure leads to gum recession.
• BODY PIERCING OF THE TONGUE AND LIPS- The metal studs cause friction along the gum line. The consistent friction wears away the surface of your gums and causing them to retract away from the metal.
Often, our patients do not notice their gums are receding because it is a slow process with nearly imperceivably small changes. There are a few signs that indicate you have gum recession including tender or swollen gums, teeth that appear longer, bleeding gums, and loose teeth. Any of these conditions are a good reason to make an appointment with our dentist.