Dental Health

9 Causes of Gum Recession

Gum health is essential for the overall health of your mouth. Gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums, is a common issue that can lead to more serious problems like periodontitis or gum disease. Your mouth contains bacteria, some of which are beneficial, but too much can lead to infection. A recession occurs when the tissue around your teeth starts to pull back or wear away. This exposes the tooth, making it more susceptible to decay and other problems. It is usually gradual, so you might not notice it at first. Sensitive teeth, red or swollen gums, bleeding gums, or receding gums are the early signs. If you notice any, see your dentist right away. Here we will discuss what causes receding gums and how to prevent the condition.

1. Genetics

DNA plays a role in everything from our physical appearance to our health. And unfortunately, gum recession is often genetic. If any parent or a close relative had receding gums, you might also be more likely to. This doesn’t mean it’s inevitable, though. Speak to your local dentist about your family’s history and what you can do to reduce your risk. They will examine your family’s dental records and help you develop a personalized plan. Before you visit, brush up on your family’s dental history. Knowing who in your family has had what can help predict your risk for certain conditions.

2. Injury

Trauma from an injury to the mouth, like a punch or a fall, can cause receding gums. This is more common in children and teenagers but can happen at any age. The good news is that this isn’t something you have to live with forever. Once the injury has healed, the gums will usually return to their normal position. However, if the trauma was severe enough, there may be some permanent damage. In this case, your dentist may recommend surgery to correct the problem. When it comes to your teeth, prevention is always the best medicine. If you love contact sports, wear a mouthguard. It will help protect your teeth and gums from injury.

3. Certain Medical Procedures

One example is radiation therapy to the head or neck. This treatment can damage the tissue in your mouth and cause the gums to recede. Surgery to remove wisdom teeth can also sometimes result in receding gums. This is because the surgeon has to cut through the gum tissue to get to the tooth. In most cases, this doesn’t cause any long-term problems. But if the surgery was extensive, you may be at a higher risk. If you are scheduled for surgery, speak to your dentist beforehand. They will help you understand the risks and what you can do to prevent them.

4. Periodontitis

Periodontitis is caused by a buildup of plaque. Plaque is a thin film of bacteria that forms on your teeth. It can harden into tartar if left for long periods. To remove tartar, visit a dentist, professional cleaner, or dental hygienist. Periodontitis causes the gums to pull away from the teeth and form pockets. These pockets become infected, and the bone around the tooth can break down. Periodontitis is the leading cause of receding gums. Signs of tartar buildup include persistent bad breath, red or swollen gums, bleeding gums, and receding gums.

5. Brushing Too Hard

Many people brush their teeth too hard in an effort to get them clean. But this can damage your gum tissue and make it more likely to recede. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and gentle circular motions when brushing. Electric toothbrushes can also be helpful because they have sensors that stop the brush from spinning if you are pressing too hard. The latest toothbrushes even have apps that track your brushing habits and give you feedback on how to improve. A quality toothbrush is worth the investment.

6. Smoking

Smoking increases your chances of getting tartar buildup, making it harder for your gums to heal from injury. If you have periodontitis, smoking can make it worse. It can also make treatment less likely to be successful. Many fantastic resources are available online and offline to help you. Your dentist can probably recommend some. Cigarettes contain over 4,000 chemicals, many of which are toxic. Quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your overall health, not just your oral health.

7. Aging

As we age, our gums naturally start to recede. This happens because the gum tissue gets thinner and less elastic. The bones and connective tissues around our teeth also begin to break down. All of this makes our gums more vulnerable to damage. Recession is a natural part of aging, but there are things you can do to prevent it. The elderly are more likely to have gum disease. Find a reputable dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups. If you notice any pain or changes in your mouth, mention them.

8. Medications

Certain medications can cause dry mouth. A dry mouth can lead to plaque and bacteria buildup. This can cause gum disease. Medicines that can cause dry mouth include antihistamines, decongestants, and painkillers. Your dentist may recommend using a saliva substitute or chewing gum to help keep your mouth moist. While taking these medications, get checked up for gum disease more often.

9. Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding, or bruxism, causes people to grind their teeth while they sleep. This can put excess pressure on the gums and cause them to recede. Teeth grinding can also damage the tooth enamel and make your teeth more sensitive. It can be caused by stress, sleep apnea, or an abnormal bite. If you think you may be grinding your teeth, see your dentist. They can provide solutions and recommendations for reducing stress and preventing teeth grinding. Braces can also help align your teeth and reduce the force on your gums.

If you’re concerned about receding gums, it’s essential to see a dentist so they can assess the situation and recommend treatment. Treatment depends on the cause of the recession. In some cases, it may be possible to reverse the damage. In other cases, the best option may be to prevent further damage. By understanding the causes, you can take steps to reduce your risk. A dentist can provide more information about recession and how to avoid it.

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