Receding gums is a common problem. Many people don’t even realize they have receding gums until they get their teeth cleaned by a dentist and find out that the gap between their teeth and gums is widening.
Fortunately, there are a range of dental treatments available. Read on as a Miami Beach, FL dentist talks about receding gums and how it’s treated.
What Causes Receding Gums?
Receding gums are when your gum line (the space between your teeth and your gum) moves away from the tooth root. This can happen for a number of reasons—some more serious than others.
There are a few things that can cause receding gums:
- Genetic factors
- Drinking too much alcohol or caffeine
- Eating too much sugar and/or starch (since sugars break down into acids)
Certain medical conditions can also cause your gums to recede, including:
- A condition called pyorrhea: This is caused by bacteria in plaque buildup on your teeth, which can lead to inflammation of the gums and bone loss around the teeth.
- Periodontal disease: This occurs when the tissue surrounding teeth becomes inflamed due to bacterial infection; it often results in bone loss as well as recession of the gum line away from the tooth root.
- Sjögren’s syndrome: This is an autoimmune disorder characterized by dry mouth and dry eyes
If you notice that your gums have become red, swollen, or tender when flossing or brushing, it’s time to talk with a dentist about whether or not you need treatment.
Dental Treatments for Receding Gums
So how do dentists treat receding gums?
There are several options available to get rid of a receding gum line, a few of which include:
- Gum grafting – In this procedure, the dentist takes tissue from the roof of the mouth (called palate) and attaches it to the receded gum line. The new tissue will then grow down into place and fill in the gap. This procedure can be done in one visit or over several visits depending on your needs.
- Fixed orthodontics – This involves placing brackets on your teeth to pull them back into place. Braces are sometimes used to help correct jaw growth issues that may also lead to gum recession. If you have crooked teeth, you may need fixed orthodontics as well as gum grafts or surgery to correct this problem.
- Surgery – If your gums are too far receded for grafting or braces, you may need surgery to move them back into place and cover them with tissue again. This is usually done by removing some bone from your jawbone, which then allows new tissue to grow in its place. Surgery is often combined with other procedures such as grafting
If you have more questions or wish to schedule a consultation, please feel free to call our Miami Beach, FL optometry office today!