How Can I Tell My Gums Are Receding and What Do I Do About It?

carla1981 / September 7, 2018

Everyone wants a healthy, white smile. Keeping on top of your oral health by brushing and flossing your teeth are the basic ways to have a healthy smile for life. Despite good care, problems can happen such as receding gums.

Receding gums are where the gums appear reddened or swollen. They literally recede away from the tooth. They are almost always a sign that serious dental issues are happening. Commonly, these are gum disease and periodontitis.

Gum Disease and Periodontitis

Have your gums been bleeding when you brush? Have you noticed that you are getting recurring bad breath that will not go away after using mouthwash? These are two signs that you are suffering from gum disease or gingivitis. If your teeth feel loose or sensitive to cold or hot drinks, these also point to gingivitis.

Usually, with this disease, you still have time to fix things both on your own and with your Dentistry Jacksonville partner. You can make it a point to brush and floss regularly, at least twice a day. Get dental checkups and regular cleanings, at least once every six months. Your dentist will monitor the situation and, with good oral hygiene, you both can heal the problem.

If gingivitis is allowed to continue, it results in receding gums. This is when it turns into periodontitis. As the gums pull away from the teeth pockets are created that can become infected. This is where you need to act immediately because once periodontitis becomes more severe the receding gums cannot be reversed and tooth loss is almost inevitable.

What to Do If Your Gums Are Receding

Even if your gums have started receding you have time to act. You simply need to work with your dentist immediately. The first course of action will be a scaling and a root planning. This gets rid of tartar and plaque that lie below the gum. Your gums may actually regrow following this treatment but only because the problem did not have enough time to become irreversible.

Another option at this point is to receive antibiotic injections into the gum. These medications vary but they work to keep bacteria from growing for months, if not years. This halts any current damage and prevents new gum damage from occurring. If you can get to your dentist soon, you may be able to solve your receding gum problem with this method.

The injections contain medicines like tetracycline. Ask your dentist which brand or medicine he or she recommends. You usually will have a choice and, if you do not have dental insurance, the different brands vary in cost. These injections are well worth the investment, however, because they are one of the least invasive procedures to effectively stop periodontitis from worsening. Your gums should start regrowing along the gum line shortly after your treatment.

If you have a good deal of damage and the bone has been affected, you may need to go through a surgical procedure. There are several procedures that involve bone or tissue grafting. You want to act as soon as you notice damage to your gums because, if you can avoid surgery, you will want to do whatever you can.

For a basic surgical procedure, your dentist will smooth the bone over so that bacteria stop growing there and causing worse tooth damage. If the problem becomes very severe, the surgery would require bone grafting. This is a process where your dentist will graft parts of healthy teeth to the unhealthy ones.

Any parts of the bone that have been damaged by the disease will be stabilized with the graft. This procedure is aimed at helping the bone to regrow. A similar procedure for any teeth that have become hollowed out by the disease includes reshaping the bone so that the hollows are less pronounced. This keeps bacteria out and tooth decay from worsening in the future.

You can avoid surgery by acting as quickly as you can when you notice your gums receding. Try not to worry because there are options to help you. Whatever you do, always stick to a healthy brushing and flossing routine. See your dentist a few times a year for an exam and for professional cleanings.

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