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Do you have red, swollen, tender or bleeding gums? Or have a bad taste in the mouth that won’t go away, along with bad breath? These are indications of gum disease, especially if you can actually see your gums receding from the teeth. What are receding gums? This is when the gum tissue surrounding teeth pulls back from the tooth, exposing either the tooth or the tooth roots. When this happens, gaps (or pockets) can arise between the teeth and the gum line, allowing bacteria to hide and build up. If this is not stopped, it can cause long-term problems including tooth loss.

What causes this to happen?

Bruxism—grinding your teeth while you sleep can cause excessive wear on the enamel.

Brushing—brushing too hard can wear down tooth enamel over time.

Misaligned teeth—if your bite doesn’t match up correctly, it can cause pressure on individual teeth, wearing down the enamel and resulting in gum recession.

Heredity—if even one of your parents have receding gums, you are also at higher risk. Studies have shown that 30% of us may be predisposed to gum disease.

Gum tissue trauma—if your gums have experienced an injury the tissue may recede.

Poor oral habits—if you are not cleaning your teeth correctly, this can result in periodontitis, because plaque can turn into calculus (tartar) that can only be removed by a dental professional.

What you can do:

–Care for your teeth and gums by brushing and flossing every day.

–You can slow down oral bacteria by using an antibacterial toothpaste and mouth rinse.

–Try wearing a mouth guard if you grind and clench your teeth while sleeping.

–See your dentist so that plaque buildup (tartar) can be removed.

If you suspect you may have gum disease, don’t put off seeing Dr. Truong Nguyen so that any necessary treatment can begin. Untreated gum disease can eventually result in tooth loss. Please call our Always Dental Care team if you have any questions or concerns. We can be reached at 484.392.7687 today!