Our teeth are amongst our most important assets. They enable us to eat nutritional food and they contribute hugely to our facial appearance when we smile. There are two things you never want to happen to your teeth, one of which is gum recession and the other is tooth loss. Both of these two afflictions can ruin your facial appearance and affect your overall confidence and self-esteem, as well as affecting the type of food you can eat. Both can be avoided if you attend regular check-ups at your dentist who will detect and treat any dental problems before they get worse.
The following signs may indicate gum recession:
- a sensitive feeling in the teeth;
- tenderness around the gums;
- gum irritation;
- sensitive roots.
Sensitive teeth are the first sign of gum recession
If you fail to remove the sticky substance called plaque from your teeth, bacteria will flourish in the substance, which can then harden and turn to tartar. The bacteria release acids which weaken the enamel on the outer side of the tooth resulting in tooth decay and the chance of tooth recession. When it gets to this stage your teeth will start to feel sensitive, so you should arrange to see your dentist immediately
The second stage of gum recession is when your gums begin to feel more tender than usual. When you brush your gums, they may bleed and in no time at all may take on a purple or red appearance and start to swell up.
The third stage of gum recession occurs when the teeth start to look longer as the gum tissue recedes. You will experience gum irritation and sensitivity around the surface of the roots of your teeth. This is when you should start to get very concerned as holes begin to appear in the roots. This is the time when your teeth may become loose and even fall out.
Exposed roots create extreme sensitivity in that area which becomes very uncomfortable and can even become quite unbearable. This happens because bacteria and periodontal disease (gum disease) have collectively destroyed the gum and bone tissue encasing the teeth. This means the teeth no longer have any way of being firmly attached so fall out.
How to solve the pain of gum recession
You will certainly need to arrange an appointment with your dentist. If your gum recession is not too serious deep cleaning of the affected area may help to reverse the problem. It is usually called root planning and tooth scaling and it is when the dentist will remove all the plaque and tartar from your teeth and the root surfaces below your gum line.
The root area which is exposed is smoothed so that the damaging bacteria have difficulty attaching to the affected tooth or teeth. If this isn’t the solution suggested by your dentist it may mean that gum surgery may be necessary in order to repair any damage from the gum recession.
What you should remember is that any sensitivity in your teeth should alert you to the potential of gum disease occurring, which should be treated to avoid gum recession. The earlier you visit your dentist the quicker the pain will disappear and the better the outcome for your teeth.