Gum recession is a common dental problem. It is the process by which the gum tissue that surrounds the teeth begins to wear away or pull back. The causes of gum recession include: periodontal disease, genetics, aggressive tooth brushing, hormonal changes, inadequate dental care, tooth grinding/clenching, and the use of tobacco products.
When gums recede, gaps form between the teeth and the gum line, exposing more of the tooth and its root, and creating a space for bacteria to grow and build up. This can damage the supporting structure for the teeth and ultimately result in tooth loss.
Tooth loss due to recessed gums can be prevented if caught early enough. Your dentist can help by deep cleaning the affected area, but in some cases gum surgery is required to repair damage.
The best way to avoid the damage caused by receding gums is to avoid the gum recession in the first place. Here are a few tips that will help you avoid gum recession.
Tip #1: Use an ultra-soft-bristled toothbrush
Hard toothbrush bristles tear at your gums and wear away your tooth enamel as well. A toothbrush with ultra-soft bristles will do a great job keeping your teeth clean, but without the damage.
Tip #2: Brush gently
Similarly as above, when you brush too hard it harms the gums and can actually cause them to recede. Brush gently and in light circles, especially near the gums.
Tip #3: Floss daily
Gum recession is sometimes caused by gum disease. Flossing daily helps keep your gums in good health.
Tip #4: Quit smoking or using other tobacco products
All tobacco products are terrible for your oral cavity. Cigarette smoking causes the gum tissue to lose vital blood supply, resulting in gum recession. Chewing tobacco aggravates the gums, and when used continuously, causes them to recede.
Tip #5: Avoid excessively sugary or acidic foods
Bacteria and other pathogenic microorganisms thrive in an acidic environment. Sugary and acidic foods can also damage the protective layer of your teeth. If you cannot avoid acidic or sugary foods, rinse your mouth well after eating them to wash the residue from your teeth and gums.
Tip #6: Drink green tea
Green tea can help reduce the inflammation in your gums and destroy the bacteria that can cause gum disease.
Tip #7: Swish with lemon oil
Although lemon oil doesn’t have the same fresh minty taste as your mouthwash, when used first thing in the morning, it can help kill bacteria in your mouth and even stimulate tissue formation.
Tip #8: Dilute and rinse with tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is a powerful microbial agent that destroys bacteria and plaque build-up in teeth and between the gums. But be sure to dilute it before you rinse with it.
Tip #9: Visit your dentist regularly
Your dentist can identify the signs of early gum disease and remove tartar from below the gum line, thus helping to catch and slow gum recession before it does damage. But this can only work if you keep your regular appointments.
Come Visit Town Center Dentistry
At Town Center Dentistry in Rancho Bernardo, we take your oral health seriously. During routine visits, we will clean your teeth and keep a close eye on your gums. If necessary, we can help demonstrate safe and gentle brushing techniques that will not damage your gums. We can also make recommendations for home care.
Come see us. Let’s work together to prevent, slow, or stop the recession of your gums.