All You Should Know About Gum Recession: Causes and Treatments
Gum recession (receding gums) is a common dental issue that people experience as they grow older. It is a form of gum disease that causes gum tissues to pull away from the teeth, thus, exposing the root underneath. Gum recession may affect one or several teeth, and because it happens slowly over time, most people don’t know when they are suffering from it.
Unfortunately, gum recession is not something that can be ignored as it leaves your teeth vulnerable to a number of issues, such as cavities, tooth sensitivity, inflammed and bleeding gums.
Read on to learn all you need to know about gum recession, its causes, and its treatment.
Who Does Gum Recession Affect?
Gum recession is most common among people over the age of 65. However, it can affect people of all ages. Your chances of developing gum recession are significantly higher if you; use chewing tobacco, have periodontal disease, or aggressively brush your teeth. Having a tongue or lip piercing can also increase your chances of developing a recession. If you’ve had braces or other forms of orthodontic treatment, you may also be susceptible to gum recession.
Causes of Gum Recession
Gum recession is a form of periodontal disease which typically starts off as bacteria and plaque buildup on the teeth and gums. This plaque buildup now causes damage over time, with the most advanced cases being the formation of pockets between the teeth and gums. These pockets create more space for plaque and bacteria to grow.
Apart from plaque and bacteria buildup, other causes of gum recession include brushing too aggressively, a family history of gum disease, HIV, diabetes, hormonal changes in women, teeth misalignment, lip and tongue piercings, injury or trauma to the gum tissue, and bad habits like smoking daily. Dry mouth from taking certain medications can also increase your likelihood of developing gum recession.
Gum Recession Symptoms
Some of the symptoms of receding gums are; exposed tooth roots, loose teeth, visibly shrinking gums, increased sensitivity, halitosis, inflamed and painful gums, and bleeding excessively after brushing and flossing.
Treatment for Gum Recession
It is important to treat mild forms of gum recession before things get worse. The processes used by the dentist to treat mild gum recession are known as tooth scaling and root planing. It is a deep cleaning process whereby a dentist removes any plaque and tartar form on the teeth, particularly below the gum line.
If there are any exposed root surfaces, they will be smoothed over to prevent bacteria from getting stuck in their grooves. The dentist may also recommend some antibiotics to help get rid of any remaining harmful bacteria in your system.
In cases where deep cleaning isn’t enough to treat gum recession, either due to pockets forming too deep in the gums or excessive bone loss, surgery might be the only solution for repairing the damage.
Some of the surgical procedures used to treat gum recession are;
Open Flap Scaling and Root Planing
With this type of scaling, the dentist folds back the affected tissues before removing all the harmful bacteria and then securing the tissues back in place. This procedure can effectively reduce the size of the pockets or eliminate them completely.
This procedure is usually carried out to regenerate bone and tissue in cases where the recession has damaged the jaw bone. The regenerative material can either be a graft tissue, a membrane, or a tissue-stimulating protein. It is applied to the gums during a pocket depth reduction surgery to encourage the body to naturally regenerate tissue and bone.
Soft Tissue Graft
A connective tissue graft is one of the most commonly used procedures for grafting gum tissue. The procedure involves attaching a skin flap cut from the roof of your mouth (or palate) to the gum tissue around your teeth exposed roots.
Gum recession is a serious issue that needs to be addressed by a dentist as quickly as possible. Depending on the severity of the recession, there are different treatment options that your dentist may recommend. These treatments help repair your gums and prevent the damage from worsening. To find a dentistry that has the expertise for the service you need, just search on Google for something like dental implants Sutton.