Receding gums are cause for concern. If it seems as though your gums are disappearing, you have every reason to be alarmed. Receding gums are a sign that something is wrong.
You might find products online targeted to your Google search terms about shrinking or receding gums, hoping that they’ll deliver on their claims that they can fix the problem overnight.
Before you hand your credit card over to shady merchants, you’ll want to do your research about what oral care products actually work and when it’s time to see a dentist.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease can come in two forms. The first is gingivitis, which is a chronic inflammation of the gums. Gingivitis is very common. About half of American adults have gingivitis, and many don’t even realize that they’re impacted by the condition. The inflammation can be so mild and come on so gradually that people don’t ever notice.
The most worrisome aspect of gingivitis is that it’s usually the precursor of periodontal disease, a more severe form of gum disease. Periodontal disease, often referred to as periodontitis, is an infection of the gums. The gums become red and inflamed, pulling away from the teeth. The teeth appear longer, and in severe cases, the portion of the tooth usually concealed by the gum can become exposed.
The Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease
People with periodontitis frequently report chronic bad breath, pain when chewing or speaking, increased tooth sensitivity, loose teeth, teeth falling out, bleeding gums, and painful oral inflammation. The pockets around the teeth often change depth with the swelling and pulling of the gums,
Dentists can usually rapidly assess a patient for periodontitis, as it is easy to visually recognize. Most people go to the dentist because they were able to self assess their condition and come to the conclusion that they were likely experiencing periodontitis.
The infection from the gums can easily spread to the jawbone, causing larger issues. If the infected tissue cannot be treated in time and the infection begins to spread, it is not uncommon for surgeons to recommend removing pieces of the jawbone overtaken by the disease.
What Causes Gum Disease?
Periodontitis is almost always caused by poor dental hygiene habits. Certain lifestyle factors and pre-existing conditions can exacerbate gum disease, increasing the severity of periodontitis.
Over the course of the day, a sticky film of plaque begins to build up on the teeth. If the plaque isn’t properly removed, it hardens into tartar that encapsulates acid and bacteria. The damaging effects of this tartar spread to the gums, causing inflammation or infection.
People with diabetes, hormonal changes, and autoimmune disorders may be more susceptible to gum disease. People taking medications that inhibit the production of saliva may also experience gum disease as a side effect.
Smokers are at a higher risk for gum disease, as smoking heightens inflammation and slows healing times. The gums don’t ever have an adequate opportunity to heal themselves when tobacco products introduce inflammatory chemicals into the body.
Can Gum Disease Be Cured or Reversed?
Dentists can administer treatments to reverse the infection in the gums. This treatment usually involves thorough professional cleanings. Your dentist will create a rigorous at-home dental hygiene plan for you that you should follow for the rest of your life, even if your gums don’t hurt.
Your dentist may also recommend lifestyle changes. Quitting smoking and eliminating added sugars from your diet can help to preserve the health of your gums, preventing the condition from worsening.
Can Your Gums Be Regrown?
There is only one way to encourage gums to grow back. It’s a surgical procedure, and it’s a valuable option for patients whose dentists believe that they will benefit from the surgery.
There is no topical product or supplement that can be used to encourage the gums to naturally grow back.
Repairing Damaged Gums
Significantly damaged gums require surgical intervention. Without intervention, tooth loss is inevitable.
There are several procedures for restoring the gums. A medical professional will evaluate your periodontitis and recommend the treatment that will be most effective for your case.
If you’ve completely lost a significant amount of gum tissue, you may require gum grafts.
Skin from the roof of your mouth or surrounding healthy gums can be grafted over the lost tissue to cover the exposed root of your teeth.
Surgical Gum Restoration
There are two types of surgical procedures that can be used to restore the gums. The first involves folding back the existing gum tissue, cleaning and treating the roots of the teeth, and then reattaching the gum tissue to the roots.
The second procedure involves a deep cleaning and the insertion of a new membrane beneath the gums. This membrane supplies the gums with protein and other regenerative compounds that encourage growth and fortification. The gum is then placed down over the membrane, which is permanently left in place.
Root planing procedures begin with a complete scaling of the teeth.
All plaque and tartar is removed, leaving behind a healthy tooth surface. Then, the roots of the tooth are smoothed, giving the gums a surface that’s easier to grip. The gums will then reattach to the root with the help of antibiotic mouthwash products that keep the environment sterile and the tissues healthy.
Keeping Your Gums Healthy
Receding gum tissue is a serious issue. Preventative measures, such as proper oral hygiene, are always necessary. If you fail to take care of your mouth, you will undoubtedly experience dental health issues including shrinking gums.
Flossing and Brushing
Flossing isn’t fun. Nobody really likes doing it. It’s such an annoying chore that many people skip it, saying they’ll do it tomorrow. Then they say “I’ll do it tomorrow” practically every day for the rest of their lives.
Flossing, in some ways, is even more important than brushing. Your toothbrush can’t get in between each and every tooth. It can only clean the surfaces and the gumline. All of the food, bacteria, and debris trapped between your teeth will stay indefinitely unless you floss it out.
If you find flossing to be difficult or uncomfortable, invest in a pressurized water flossing device. Although water flossers are slightly imperfect, they work exponentially better than never flossing at all.
You should also be brushing your teeth twice a day, two minutes per session. Never skip a brushing session. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles. Hard bristles can damage your enamel and further irritate your gums, which is definitely something you want to avoid if you’re experiencing the onset of gum disease.
Choose a lightly abrasive toothpaste loaded with minerals to help fortify your teeth. Remineralizing toothpastes can help to undo some of the mild damage that occurs as a result of eating and drinking.
Unless your toothpaste contains a solution like our patented Nano Silver, there are no ingredients in it that are going to kill bacteria. That’s what mouthwash is for. Bacteria can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Sanitizing your mouth before you go to bed will assure that these harmful bacteria aren’t allowed to remain undisturbed overnight, giving you a wakeup call of bad breath and damage to your oral health.
Most mouthwashes utilize alcohol to kill all of the microorganisms living within the mouth. This is less than ideal. Your oral microbiome is home to millions of microorganisms, and some of them are beneficial. A mouthwash that utilizes a natural, effective, and gentle antibacterial agent like nano silver can destroy bad bacteria while leaving your mouth’s healthy natural biofilm intact.
Put your credit card back in your wallet. Any product that claims it can regrow your gums cannot deliver on those promises. Gums cannot regrow without professional invasive intervention performed by a dental surgeon. Tissue membrane or gum grafts are the only way to create or replenish new oral tissue. Some procedures can salvage receding gums by properly reattaching them.
If you want products to preserve the health of your teeth and gums, research the options available to you. Keeping your teeth clean, strong, and free from plaque can help to ward off gum disease. Killing the bacteria responsible for infections can, in conjunction with good oral hygiene practices, prevent periodontal disease and reduce the impact of gingivitis related gum inflammation.