Receding gums may not seem like an urgent condition but if left untreated they can lead to more serious problems such as periodontal disease, tooth loss and in the worst case, damage to the bone and tissue of the mouth and jaw. The latest research also shows a link to between gum disease and an increased risk of heart disease, potentially due to the increase of inflammation in the body.
What Causes Gum Recession?
Gum recession is a common problem in adults over the age of 40, but it may also occur in younger adults and children.
Poor oral hygiene, medical conditions such as diabetes, teeth grinding while sleeping, smoking, ill-fitting dentures, sports injury or other trauma to the mouth such as piercing of a lip or tongue, or even brushing your teeth too hard can cause receding gums.
Gum recession tends to happen gradually. You may not notice a difference in your gums from one day to the next. If you see your dentist twice per year, they should be able to tell if there’s been recession during that time.
Receding Gums Treatment
Gum recession can’t be reversed. Once the gum tissue has pulled back and away from the teeth, it can’t re-grow on its own. However, treatments can keep the problem from getting worse. For a mild recession, deep cleaning the affected area can alleviate the problem and stop it from progressing.
Deep cleaning or tooth scaling and root planning may also be required to remove the plaque and tartar build up on the teeth and the gum line.
In more serious cases, a surgical procedure may be required such as gum tissue grafting, pocket reduction surgery or bone regeneration.
Gum grafting is a surgical procedure that usually involves taking tissue from one area, such as the roof of the mouth, then transferring it to the gum area.
The latest technique, Dr Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique™, requires no cutting, no sutures and virtually no downtime. It is a new minimally invasive option for treating receding gums without the pain and recovery time required with gum grafting surgery. However this procedure is expensive and can cost between €750 and €1800 per arch.
As the prevention is always better than cure, don’t wait until your condition gets worse. If your gums bleed when you clean your teeth, or the gum seems to be pulling away from a tooth, make an appointment today.