Receding gums, known as “gingival recession,” is a common condition that occurs when the gum tissue that normally surrounds the tooth pulls back and exposes the tooth root. If the recession goes untreated and becomes severe, there is increased risk that the exposed tooth root will become decayed and/or infected. If gum recession is caused by physical wear of the gums by vigorous brushing or the use of a toothbrush with hard bristles, the dentist will recommend a softer brush and better brushing technique. If gum disease is at the root of the problem, the dentist will work to remove built-up plaque and tartar accumulations. Tooth-colored composite resins may also be recommended to cover exposed root surfaces.
Taking care of your teeth and gums is vital to maintaining a beautiful smile and staying healthy for life. If you are only mildly affected by receding gums, that’s good! If you catch it early, you may not require professional treatment to fix it. Your dentist will help you identify the cause and will instruct you in how to address it. You may have to re-evaluate your flossing habits, get a mouth guard and buy a different toothbrush. To schedule an appointment, please call 9 WEST MAIN DENTAL at 508-867-2777. We are located at 9 West Main St., West Brookfield.
P.S. Age is a leading risk factor for gum recession, with 88 percent of people over the age of 65 having receding gums in at least one tooth.