What Is Gum Recession?
Gum recession, or receding gums, is the pulling away of your gums to a lower position towards the bottom of the teeth. In extreme cases, the root of the tooth becomes exposed to bacterial invasion with serious complications leading to loosening of the tooth and eventual tooth loss.
When gum recession occurs, you can see small “pockets” forming between your teeth and gum line. Those pockets create the doorways to disease-causing bacterial and plaque buildup. Left untreated, your gums and supporting tissue — and worse, the bone structures of the teeth — suffer severe damage. That damage results in the loosening of the tooth, infection of its supporting root and eventual tooth loss because of periodontal disease.
Is Gum Recession Common?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, periodontal disease in its early stages of gingivitis (infection of the gums), is prevalent in the US among the following populations:
- 47.2% of adults past age 30 have some form of periodontal disease.
- 70.1% of adults 65 years or older suffer from periodontal disease.
- Men (56.4%) are more likely than women (38.4%) to have periodontal disease.
- People who earned less than a high school education as well as current smokers have a 66.9% and 64.2% likelihood of having the condition.
Is Gum Recession Genetic?
Heredity can influence when or whether someone can get periodontal disease and how severe it might be. In fact, research suggests that genetics plays a significant role in determining our susceptibility to contracting periodontal disease. Evidence suggests that someone with a family history of the condition is 30% more likely to also suffer from dental problems caused by gum recession.
How Do You Get Gum Recession?
In additional to advancing age and genetics, other causes of gum recession include:
- Bad oral health habits, such as insufficient and inefficient brushing and flossing. How are you doing? Visit the ADA’s web page for advice on brushing. Flossing is one of the best defenses against plaque buildup, a major cause of gum recession and periodontal disease.
- Overly aggressive brushing or brushing too vigorously with a hard-bristled tooth brush can cause your gums to recede. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and let up on the pressure. Two minutes is time enough to do a good job. You don’t need to scrub away at your tooth enamel to effectively clean your teeth.
- Smoking and chewing tobacco are bad for your health and for your gums. Using dip or chewing tobacco adds a double whammy to the harm your teeth and gums can suffer. Dipping and chewing tobacco can cause a variety of gum disease resulting in gum recession and tooth loss.
- Grinding your teeth, or bruxism, can lead to gum recession. If you wake up with sore jaw muscles or a headache each morning, this could be a sign you’re clenching or grinding your teeth in your sleep. You’re susceptible, among other things, to gum recession, and you could be a candidate for fitting of a mouth guard. See your dentist in this case.
- Finally, injury to the mouth, badly aligned teeth, and some medical conditions like diabetes can precipitate gum recession. Poorly fitted partial dentures can also cause gum recession around the remaining teeth.
What Are the Symptoms of Gum Recession?
If your teeth bleed after brushing or flossing, your gums could be receding. Another sure sign is red, swollen gums, which indicate the existence or onset of gingivitis.
If you experience pain at the gum line or can see exposed tooth roots, your gums are receding.
Another indication is bad breath caused by the existence of invasive bacteria into your gums.
Finally, one sure indicator is the loosening of a tooth and accompanying soreness due to the inflamed gum and sensitivity of the exposed root.
“Completely painless procedures.”
– Charlie Sauer
Coastal Periodontics Has the Treatments That Prevent Gum Recession
Dental Ozone Therapy Maintains Healthy Gums
Dental ozone therapy employs ozone gas to destroy the bacteria that invade the gums. With no side effects, this treatment is noninvasive and strengthens the teeth and gums, preventing future invasions of bacteria.
LANAP® laser gum surgery is the less invasive and painless alternative to the cutting and suturing techniques of the past. It is minimally invasive, and Dr. Tredinick provides this treatment to our Lake Jackson patients who have periodontal disease caused by gum recession. There are no scalpels or painful sutures used, and patients report less pain and experience faster recovery.
Patients undergoing treatment for periodontal disease need a regimen and schedule of periodic checkups. That includes education and helping you understand how to prevent gum recession and preserve your dental health through healthy living habits.
The Coastal Periodontics team takes the time to brief you and provide a treatment and prevention program and checkup schedule best suited to your needs.
Are You Feeling “Long in the Tooth”?
OK, we know that the expression “long in the tooth” alludes to a horse’s gums’ receding because of age, but it has been applied humorously to people.
If you are a Lake Jackson area resident and are experiencing any of the symptoms of gum recession, tooth sensitivity or bleeding gums, make an online appointment or call us at 979-413-4808, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to get a personalized treatment plan to prevent future damage.
Treat Tooth Decay and Gum Disease Naturally
Ozone therapy is a natural, comfortable treatment for minor to average tooth decay and periodontal infection. It uses ozone gas to destroy bacteria around your teeth and gums and create an environment in which it cannot flourish.
New Patient Special: Support the Charity of Your Choice
Get a complete exam, X-rays and 3D CT scan all for $250. We’ll create a personalized care plan for the treatment that is best for you, whether the revolutionary Pinhole Technique for gum recession, laser assisted treatment for gum disease, and a variety of implant procedures to replace missing teeth or support dentures. Plus, you’re supporting your community – we’ll donate a portion of your fee goes to the charity of your choice.