When you see your dentist in Damascus for a checkup, one thing he or she will evaluate is whether or not you have any signs of gum recession. Gum recession can be the sign of serious gum disease and could put you at risk of tooth pain and tooth loss. Here is what you need to know about gum recession and how it can affect your oral health.
What is gum recession?
Gum recession occurs when the part of the gum that surrounds the teeth pulls back, or recedes. When this happens, the tooth root can be exposed, and the pocket that forms between the teeth and gums can become filled with bacteria. Over time, this process can lead to the destruction of the roots, bone, and supporting tissue that hold the teeth in place, which leads to tooth loss. Gum recession is common, and serious. If your dentist sees signs of gum recession during your exam, he or she will recommend treatment right away. You have a higher risk of having gum recessions if you have existing gum disease, brush your teeth too hard, or have poor oral hygiene. Hormonal fluctuations, diabetes, and genetics also play roles.
Does gum recession cause symptoms?
Because gum recession develops gradually, many people don’t notice any symptoms and only find out they have a problem during a dental exam. Other people may experience tooth sensitivity, because nerves can become exposed as the gums recede. You may also notice that teeth in the affected area look longer than normal. If you touch your gums in the area where you think your gums may be receding, you may feel a bump or notch. If you experience symptoms, make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible.
Can it be treated?
Treatments for gum recession depend on the severity of the condition. In cases of mild gum recession, your dentist may recommend scaling and planing, which is a deep cleaning treatment to remove plaque and tartar that is in the pocket created by the recession. In some cases, surgery may be necessary, including pocket depth reduction and soft tissue graft procedures.