Welcome to the Dentakay Clinic's blog! Today, we're discussing an important oral health issue: receding gums. Many people may not realize they have this condition, but it can lead to severe problems if left untreated. This post will explore the causes and symptoms of receding gums and available treatment options. So if you're concerned about your gum health, keep reading to learn more.
What are receding gums?
Receding gums, called as gum recession, is a condition in which the gum tissue surrounding the teeth pulls away or reduces.
Healthy gums are typically pink and firm, covering the teeth' roots to protect them from bacteria and other harmful substances.
When the gums recede, the roots of the teeth become exposed, which can lead to several dental problems.
How do receding gums differ from healthy gums?
Receding gums differ from healthy gums in several ways:
- Color: Healthy gums are typically pink, while receding gums may appear reddish or pale.
- Shape: Healthy gums have a smooth, even appearance, while receding gums may appear uneven or concave.
- Firmness: Healthy gums are firm and resilient, while receding gums may feel soft.
What is the appearance and location of receding gums?
The appearance and location of receding gums depends on the severity of the condition. Sometimes, receding gums may not be noticeable, while in other cases, they may be quite noticeable.
Receding gums are typically found on the front and side teeth but can also occur on the back teeth. They may appear as a small patch of an exposed tooth root or involve a significant portion of the tooth.
In severe cases, the gums may recede so much that the tooth appears longer than usual.
Causes of receding gums
There are several potential causes of receding gums. Here are some common ones to be aware of:
Some people may be more prone to gum recession because of their genetic makeup. You may have a higher risk if your family have a history of gum disease or receding gums.
Poor oral hygiene
Neglecting to brush and floss regularly can lead to the build-up of plaque and bacteria on the teeth and gums. This can cause inflammation and, over time, lead to gum recession.
Hormonal fluctuations can affect the health of your gums. For example, women may experience gum recession during pregnancy or menopause due to hormonal changes in the body.
Use of tobacco products
Smoking or using other tobacco products can increase your risk of gum recession. These products can irritate the gums and make them more prone to infection and inflammation.
Grinding or clenching teeth (bruxism)
Consistently grinding or clenching your teeth can put extra pressure on the gums, leading to recession.
Brushing teeth too hard
While it's essential to brush your teeth effectively, doing so too aggressively can cause damage to the gums. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush gently and in circular motions to avoid damaging the gums.
Some medications, such as certain blood pressure medications and antidepressants, can cause dry mouth, leading to gum recession. If you're taking a drug that causes dry mouth, drink plenty of water and practice good oral hygiene to help prevent receding gums.
It's important to note that gum recession can have multiple causes, and it may be a combination of factors that contribute to it in any individual. If you're concerned about receding gums, talk to your dentist or oral healthcare provider to discuss the potential causes and determine the best course of treatment.
Causes of receding gums
Receding gums can be a painful experience, and it's essential to be aware of the signs and symptoms so that you can seek treatment as soon as possible. Here are some common symptoms of receding gums:
Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
If your teeth are suddenly sensitive to hot and cold foods and drinks, this could signify receding gums. When the gums recede, they expose more of the tooth's root, which can be more sensitive to temperature changes.
Pain when chewing
If you're experiencing pain when chewing, it could signify that your gums are receding. This is because the gums provide support for the teeth, and when they recede, it can cause the teeth to become loose and painful to use.
As mentioned, receding gums can cause the teeth to become loose. This can be a worrying symptom, as it can lead to tooth loss if you did not fix it.
Another sign of receding gums is the appearance of longer teeth. This is because the gums have receded and are no longer covering as much of the tooth.
Visible tooth roots
When the gums recede, they expose more of the tooth's root. This can be easily seen if you look closely at your teeth and can be a clear sign of receding gums.
Receding gums can also cause the gums to bleed easily, even when you're not brushing or flossing. This can be a sign of gum disease, which is often a cause of receding gums.
Treatment options for receding gums
When treating receding gums, there are a few different options available. Here are three common treatments:
Early Detection and Prevention
Receding Gums: Is It Too Late for Treatment? According to Dentakay dentists, the best way to treat receding gums is to prevent them from happening. This means seeing your dentist regularly for checkups and practising good oral hygiene at home. Brushing and flossing daily can help remove plaque and bacteria contributing to gum recession. Non-Surgical Treatments
If your gum recession is caught early enough, your dentist may recommend non-surgical treatments like scaling and root planing. This process involves deep cleaning the roots of your teeth to remove any tartar or plaque build-up. You can also use antimicrobial mouthwash and fluoride treatments to help prevent further gum recession.
If your gum recession is more advanced, your dentist may recommend surgical treatments like gum grafting. This involves taking a small piece of gum tissue from another part of your mouth and using it to cover the exposed root of your tooth. Another option is soft tissue laser treatment, which uses a laser to remove infected gum tissue and promote healthy regrowth.
Several factors, including poor oral hygiene, gum disease, and genetics, can cause receding gums. Symptoms include sensitivity and visible gum recession. Treatment options include improved oral hygiene, professional cleaning, and possibly surgery.