What You Need to Know About Gum Recession

Longer teeth, exposed roots and loose teeth. Do you have these symptoms? If so, your gums may be receding. 

According to the Canadian Dental Association, you have a seven out of 10 chance of developing gum disease sometime in your life, and most people are not aware that they have it. That’s why it’s important to have regular checkups with your dentist so they can assess your mouth for any issues, including gum recession.

What is Gum Recession?

Gums are an important part of your mouth because they protect and hold your teeth in place. When your gum recedes, it means that your gums are pulling away from your teeth. This deterioration causes your teeth to look longer as more of the tooth is exposed. 

In severe gum recession cases, a gap between your teeth and gums may form, called pockets. The bigger the pocket, the more food and bacteria can enter. Gum recession may even lead to exposed roots. Your tooth’s roots don’t have the same protections as the top of your tooth, the crown, does. Tooth enamel protects your tooth’s crown. When the gum recedes, and the root becomes exposed, your tooth is prone to increased sensitivity and decay. 

Gum Recession Causes and How You Can Prevent It

  • Brushing too hard: Brushing your teeth twice a day is an essential part of your daily routine, but did you know that the way you brush your teeth can cause gum recession? It may feel like brushing harder is a good way to deep clean your teeth, but brushing this way is bad for your gums and can wear down tooth enamel. The proper way of brushing your teeth is by doing it gently and giving extra care to the areas where your teeth and gums meet. We recommend using toothbrushes that have soft bristles. If you are using an electric toothbrush, apply light pressure for three-seconds on all three of your tooth’s surfaces: front, back and top.
  • Poor dental hygiene: Not brushing and flossing daily can also cause gum recession. Brush your teeth in the morning and the evening every day, and floss at least once a day. Getting regular dental checkups by visiting your dentist twice a year is also important. 
  • Hereditary factors: Genetics can play a role in receding gums. Some people are born with thin gums, and if their parents are prone to gum recession, they are likely to be prone to it as well. 
  • Smoking: Cigarettes and tobacco also cause gum recession because it causes an increase in plaque build-up. Consider quitting this habit to improve your dental health. 

We’re Happy to Help

The burning question we get from patients is, “Will my gums grow back once they recede?” Unfortunately, the answer is no. Once your gums recede, they do not grow back. It’s better to take preventative measures, make sure you have excellent dental hygiene, and regularly visit your dentist and dental hygienist. If you have gum recession, there are steps that your dentist can do to help, which may include dental surgery. Talk to your dentist at Kildonan Crossing Dental Centre about a treatment plan. They can also offer more tips on how to protect your gums from receding.

Kildonan Crossing Dental Centre has a team of stellar dentists and hygienists serving ast Winnipeg who can assist you with these needs. Our clinic is at Regent and Lagimodiere and is easily accessible by our patients in Transcona, East Kildonan, North Kildonan, East St. Paul, St. Boniface, Windsor Park, Island Lakes and Sage Creek. Book your appointment today!