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Gum Recession and Root Exposure


What is Gum Recession?

Gum, or gingival, recession occurs when the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth leaving an exposed root surface. This root surface can be sensitive to cold, hot and sweets. It can also be an esthetic problem. When gum recession is a problem, gum reconstruction using grafting techniques is an option.




What Causes Gum Recession?

  • Overly aggressive brushing or flossing. It's great to be enthusiastic about oral care, but you should make sure that you're brushing, not scrubbing! Always use a soft or extra soft toothbrush. Be gentle on your teeth, and remember that taking care of them isn't supposed to hurt.
  • Genetics. Your gums' characteristics are determined by your genetics, just as the rest of your body is. If one or both of your parents have gum recession, you're at a higher risk for receding gums.
  • Prominent tooth roots or muscle attachments that can push gums out of place.
  • Grinding your teeth, or bruxism. Do you often wake up with a headache? Does your spouse or partner complain that you grind your teeth? This habit can be the cause of many dental maladies, not just gum recession, so let your dentist know right away if you think you are grinding your teeth. Teeth grinding can be treated easily and painlessly with a mouth guard and several other options.
  • Trauma to gum tissue. The gum tissue may recede when a traumatic injury has occurred on a tooth or teeth.
  • Partial dentures that do not fit correctly.
  • Poor oral health. If your oral health habits are questionable, gum recession may be a result of periodontitis.




Gum Recession in Indianapolis, IN | Dr. Bruce B. Wiland