Gum recession, which involves lowering of the gingival (gum) tissue around each tooth, becomes more prevalent with age; about half of older adults have at least one tooth affected by gum recession. Aside from aging, this condition may also be influenced by genetic factors. For instance, some people are born with thinner gum tissue than others, insufficient bone structure for overlying gums, and/or poorly positioned teeth, all of which predispose them to gum recession. Otherwise, it is possible that brushing teeth too aggressively (or with a brush with bristles that are too firm) may contribute to gingival recession over time. Whatever the cause, gum recession can lead to tooth sensitivity (due to exposed roots). The dentist should be consulted.
There is no magic to avoiding gum recession and achieving optimal dental hygiene success. Almost everyone can do it with a modest amount of time invested daily. Keeping up with home dental care as well as scheduling periodic cleanings and wellness exams are two important steps toward accomplishing the goal of a healthy mouth. For full-service dental care for all members of your family, please call 1-508.867.2777 for an appointment at West Brookfield Dental, 9 West Main St., West Brookfield.
P.S. To avoid gum recession, brush your teeth gently with a soft-bristle toothbrush in circular motions or at a 45-degree angle to the teeth rather than straight up and down or across, which can traumatize gums.