Do i need to worry if i have receding gum?
If you’ve noticed some of your teeth seem appearing more exposed due to gum recession and to be “longer” than you remembered, this means that your gums have shrunk back or receded to expose more of the underlying tooth.
It’s not just an esthetic issue or unattractive — gum recession could lead to severe consequences like bone or tooth loss. But before we start explaining the treatment, we need to know why it happened.
Causes of Gum Recession
Here are 4 of the most common causes for gum recession and what we can do about them.
Gum type you have. There are two kinds of risk factors: those you can control and those you can’t. Because you inherited the trait from your parents, genetically, your gum tissue thickness might be classified as either thick or thin. If you have thin tissues, you’re more susceptible to gum recession — which means we’ll need to be extra vigilant about caring for your gum health.
Tooth position. Normally a tooth erupts during childhood in the center of its bony housing (socket). But it can erupt outside of center of the bone arch, often resulting in little to no gum tissue growth around it. The best solution is to move the tooth to a better position within the bony housing through orthodontics such as “ Invisalign” which are a series of clear aligners & a great option, nowadays, or through conventional orthodontics . This in turn might stimulate, partially, gum growth in certain cases.
Traumatic brushing. Ironically, gum recession could be the result of brushing. Consistently brushing too hard can inflame and tear the tissues to the point they begin to recede. This type of physical recession often affects the left side of the mouth more. This is because most people use a toothbrush in their right hand and put more pressure on the left side of their jaws. The pattern also tends to affect the side gums more than the front gums. Brushing doesn’t require a lot of force to remove plaque: use gentle, circular motions with your manual toothbrush and preferably, use an electric toothbrush which is less traumatic to the gum if used properly. Other physical factors that push the gums back include lip or tongue piercings, and damage from a poor restorative dental treatment such as ill-fitting dental crowns or over-contoured dental fillings.
Periodontal (gum) disease. This, by far, is the greatest cause for gum recession: an infection caused by a poor oral hygiene and built-up of bacterial plaque. The weakened tissues begin to detach from the teeth and recede. Gum disease can be treated with aggressive plaque removal, along with a wide variety of gum treatments. Practicing daily brushing and flossing and regularly visiting your dentist and preferably, your “Periodontist” for thorough cleanings and checkups are the best practices for keeping your gums as healthy as possible.
a)Age is a key risk factor for receding gums. Around 88 percent of people older than 65 years have a receding gum in at least one tooth.
b)People who smoke and use tobacco products also face an increased risk of receding gums.
c)Genetics is another factor, as people who have thin or weak gums can pass these characteristics on via their genes.
Diabetes can also increase the risk of receding gums.
Receding gums can cause teeth to feel sensitive to cold and heat.
Many people with receding gums may not notice or aware at the beginning that their gums are receding.However, when people have receding gums, they may experience the following:
• concerns about changing appearance, as the tooth appears longer and the space between teeth increases
• fear of losing teeth
• sensitivity to cold and heat due to exposed tooth roots
Most importantly, receding gums can be a symptom of underlying dental problems, including gum disease, and can increase the risk of tooth decay and tooth loss. They can also experience a bad breath and bleeding gums.
Most cases of mild gum recession do not need treatment. Dentists may advise preventive measures to monitor the gums. Teaching effective but gentle brushing is an effective early intervention.
For people who do need treatment, several options are available. Book your appointment with Gum Specialist Dr.Miski if you have gum recession, to discuss the treatment options.
Some of the causes of gingival recession are preventable.
The most obvious, preventable cause is brushing the teeth too harshly or using a hard-bristled toothbrush. Instead, people should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and avoid over brushing, applying gentle strokes.
Plaque buildup and tartar can lead to periodontal disease, so maintaining good oral hygiene can also help prevent receding gums.
People who have concerns about their teeth or receding gums should consult Periodontist Dr.Miski to discuss their worries.