When Good Gums Go Bad

Gum Recession: What you need to know

Healthy gums protect your teeth from periodontal disease and prevent tooth sensitivity. If you take care of your gums, you’ll have a lot to smile about! The most effective way to protect your gum tissue is by thoroughly and regularly brushing and flossing and seeing your dentist for regular checkups and cleaning. When teeth are healthy, gum tissue fits snuggly around each tooth, almost like a cuff. When gums start to recede, they pull away from the tooth. This is not just unsightly but can lead to serious dental problems.   

What Makes Gums Recede? 

Gum recession can result from:

  • Aggressive tooth brushing (Hard-bristle brushes can contribute)
  • Genetics (some people are just born with thin, weak gums)
  • Ill-fitting dentures
  • Injury (Some sports can lead to gum injury)
  • Periodontal (Gum) disease
  • Prominent tooth roots or attachment muscles pushing gums out of place
  • Smoking or chewing tobacco

Why You Should Treat Gum Recession

When gum recession occurs, “pockets,” or gaps, form between the teeth and gum line, making it easy for disease-causing bacteria to collect. If left untreated, supporting tissue and bone structures of the teeth can suffer severe damage. This can lead to an unattractive smile, root sensitivity, loss of supporting bone, tooth decay, plaque build-up and risk of further recession. 

Treatments for Gum Recession

Although the causes and treatments vary, your dentist can help stop gum recession in its tracks or reverse severe cases. 

Brushing too hard?

If your gums are receding because you brush too hard, ask your dentist or hygienist how to properly clean your teeth. Although changing the way you brush won’t reverse existing damage, it will prevent further recession. 

Periodontal Disease? 

Dental cleaning procedures such as scaling and root planing can keep dental problems at bay, including gum recession. Using these processes, your dental health professional will remove plaque and tartar from tooth and root surfaces. This will help heal gum tissue and encourage gum reattachment to the tooth.

Partial Denture Misalignment? 

If your gums have receded because of a partial denture that doesn’t fit right, your dentist should be able to adjust or remake the dentures for you, to protect precious gum tissue. 

Gum Grafts

In some cases, gum recession is severe. If this is the case, your dentist may recommend a bone graft.  

About Dr. Fred Wong of Blue Ocean Dentistry in Glendora, California

Dr. Fred Wong and the staff at Blue Ocean Dentistry use the latest available dental treatments, equipment, and materials – all of which make a marked difference in our patients’ experiences. We are committed to helping our patients achieve optimal dental health. We creatively combine dental science and artistry — which can literally redesign your smile. Since even a subtle change in your smile will help you to project self-confidence and high self-esteem, we love helping you feel good about yourself. We deliver the finest dental care at the most reasonable cost and accept most dental insurance plans as well as CareCredit. For more about the dental treatment plans we offer or to schedule an appointment, call today (626) 852-6999.