Gum Recession

Posted .

Healthy gums function to keep the teeth tightly anchored, covering the entire length of the root. Gum recession refers to the process of gum tissue gradually pulling back from the teeth to reveal tooth roots. The exposure of tooth roots can be a serious health concern as it can consequently lead to decay, infection, and eventually tooth loss.

Receding gums are a fairly common condition, but are usually not detected initially, commonly being mistaken as a physiological sign of aging. However, it should be diagnosed as early as possible to ensure early prevention.

Maintaining good oral hygiene and visiting your dentist for regular dental checkups can help prevent, slow, or stop gum recession.

Causes and risk factors:

The primary reason for gum recession is trauma to the gum tissue, which can be inflicted by a variety of factors. Listed below are some of the most common ones:

  1. Injurious habits, such as:
    • Aggressive tooth brushing in a horizontal motion, applying too much force, or using a hard-bristled toothbrush
    • Wedging of toothpicks between teeth
    • Grinding of teeth or clenching (Bruxism)
    • Grinding or clenching the teeth can exert undue force on the gums, causing them to recede.
    • Chewing tobacco
    • Using harsh mouthwashes
  2. Smoking
  3. Family history of gum disease
  4. Hormonal changes in women, due to pregnancy or oral contraceptives
  5. Oral jewelry
  6. Radiation therapy of the head and neck region
  7. Complications associated with orthodontic treatment

Common symptoms of receding gums:

The first sign of gum recession that you’re most likely to notice is usually tooth sensitivity, meaning that you’ll experience discomfort or pain in your teeth after eating or drinking something cold or hot. This is felt as a consequence of the gum tissue shrinking away from the gum line, exposing the tooth roots.

In addition to this, there are several other symptoms that you can experience if you have receding gums.

  • Bleeding from gums while brushing or flossing
  • Teeth appearing to be longer than normal
  • Bad breath
  • Loose or mobile teeth
  • Visibly red, swollen gums
  • Exposed tooth roots
  • Decay


Gum recession can be diagnosed by visual examination of the mouth by a dentist. Careful inspection and evaluation can aid in early diagnosis and hence assure a good treatment prognosis. After the diagnosis is made, the patient can then be referred to a periodontist (a dentist who specializes in gum diseases).

The expert periodontists here at Periodontal Associates in Aurora and Littleton, Dr. Heller, Dr. Beckman, Dr. Thousand, and Dr. Hyer are committed to helping you with timely diagnosis of gum recession. The earlier it is detected, the better the treatment outcome will be!


The treatment mainly comprises of two options that can either help reattach the healthy gum present below the recession or attempt to regenerate lost gum tissue. These options are gingival grafting or a root coverage procedure.

  1. Gingival grafting involves placing a tissue graft below the existing recession, ensuring the recession stops where it’s at. It adds strong gum tissue below the existing recession.
  2. Root coverage grafting is done to rebuild the gums that are missing.

Our team at Periodontal Associates is fully equipped with the expertise to treat gum recession effectively in Aurora and Littleton, Colorado. If you happen to take notice of your gums receding, we encourage you to reach out to us and book an appointment. Call or email at 303-755-4500 or


Once the gums have receded, they generally cannot regenerate on their own. The treatments mainly aim at reattaching the lost gum tissue back to its place. Your periodontist can strive to rebuild the gum tissue, but it is possible only if caught at an early stage. Hence, it is crucial to preserve the health and integrity of the gum tissue, to increase the longevity of your dentition.

There are several measures that you can adopt to help prevent and reverse gum disease. Practicing good oral hygiene is key to ensuring good health of gums and supporting tissues! Good oral hygiene habits include brushing twice a day using a soft-bristled brush, flossing once a day, and making regular visits to your dentist for dental checkups.

Employing the correct brushing technique is of prime importance when it comes to maintaining gum health. Make sure to apply gentle pressure with your toothbrush, using a circular motion to brush your teeth. Brush both the inside and outside surfaces. Angle the toothbrush at 45 degrees to the tooth. Be vigilant to brush for at least two minutes before you rinse your mouth.

Positioning your toothbrush at a 445-degree angle aims to effectively clean beneath your gum line.

Brushing in a circular motion helps protect the gums from recession.

If your teeth are malaligned and are causing undue trauma to your gums, do talk to your dentist about the treatment options to resolve this issue and remove the cause of trauma.

If you’re experiencing gum recession because of self-inflicted injury such as from habits like teeth grinding or clenching, you may be given a mouth guard by your dentist, to protect your gums from unnecessary forces.

Quit smoking, as it can contribute to worsening your gum disease.

The significance of a healthy diet in sustaining good oral health cannot be emphasized enough. Be sure to eat a balanced diet and refrain from processed foods that have a notorious reputation for causing dental decay and aggravating existing dental problems!

For any queries regarding this condition, please don’t hesitate to contact us at the given numbers. For us, your satisfaction is of utmost importance!

(303)755-4500 Aurora

(303)795-5700 Littleton