Gum recession occurs when the root of a tooth becomes exposed, causing the receding or loss of gum tissue. Although gums naturally recede with age, it can be the result of many factors, including brushing your teeth too roughly, misaligned or crowded teeth, tooth clenching or grinding. Fortunately, gum recession can be prevented, saving you from the tooth sensitivity and loss that gum recession can cause.
Gum recession can be avoided with proper brushing and flossing techniques, as well as scheduling regular dental appointments. Another more extreme solution to gum recession includes orthodontic therapy to help your teeth return to their proper places, which in turn allows an increase in the zone of gum tissue. As an alternative, you can undergo gum grafting surgery to cover the roots of your teeth. It can also help to wear a night guard to help prevent added stress on your teeth while sleeping.
Tips to prevent receding gums
• Reduce plaque build-up. Plaque contains bacteria that wreak havoc on the gum tissue.
• Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid damaging your gums.
• Since gum recession may be associated with teeth grinding and clenching, you may want to consider wearing a night guard to protect your teeth from involuntary grinding while you are asleep.
• See your dentist twice a year to ensure that your teeth and gums are healthy, as well as to detect oral problems at their earliest stage.
Gum recession, like many other problems, has their symptoms. The warning signs to look out for are:
• Food getting stuck between your gums and supporting teeth
• Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
• Sensitivity to hot or cold food and beverages
• Redness or puffiness around the gums
• Bad breath
• Exposed tooth roots
For more information on gum recession, or to schedule an oral examination, contact a dentist in Cape Town.