A: It depends on how much recession you have. If your recession is caused by gum disease with the pockets, then I don’t recommend cosmetic dentistry—you’re just hiding the problem. I’d rather you fix the problem, but if it’s just minor then of course it does.
What Are Receding Gums?
Receding gums is a dental condition where the gums have receded back towards the root exposing the part of your tooth that is not protected by enamel—it is known as the “neck” of the tooth. It is just dentine which is the hard substance your tooth is mainly comprised of. Dentine is where all the nerve endings reside that make your teeth sensitive to cold, hot, sweet, as well as touch. Since dentine is yellow it is more visible with receding gums and makes teeth appear discolored, but also it is softer than enamel which poses a more serious risk— a higher potential for permanent damage to the tooth.
What Causes Receding Gums?
Receding gums can occur a result of many different factors such as lifestyle, diet, bad habits, genes, and especially the dental hygiene regimen you undertake or lack thereof. Gum recession is a serious sign that something is not right and it is not something to be ignored. If caught early before it is too severe, gum recession can be treated and stopped from receding further or undergo corrective surgery to restore the gumline.
Of those many reasons why gums may recede, the primary culprit is gum disease and bacteria. They can destroy the jawbone that holds your teeth in place as well as gum tissue. But one of the bad habits that can also lead to gum recession is actually a good habit—just taken too far.
Aggressive tooth brushing may not seem like it is dangerous, in fact, it may seem like a good thing—but it most certainly is a bad thing for your teeth. When you brush too aggressively you run the high risk of damaging the gum tissue as well as eroding the enamel on your teeth—which is how the recession starts.
Sometimes, it’s not even things you can control that cause gum recession. If your mother had the same issues and her parents did as well and so on…then it might be due to your family genetics. This means you should be more vigilant about your dental hygiene given your known propensity for the condition.
Changes in hormones in women can also be a culprit for receding gums. Women fluctuate in hormone levels during puberty, menopause, and pregnancy. During one of these hormonal shifts—receding gums can sneak up on a woman going through these changes.
Can Cosmetic Dentistry Fix Receding Gums?
Masking gum minor recession with cosmetic dentistry is a viable solution depending on the severity of the issue at hand. Minor gum recession can be masked if your dentist doesn’t think it is a severe case; with a non-surgical procedure known as gum veneers.
Gum veneers can be best described as dentures for your gums. Some are made from acrylic and are designed to be removed nightly and cleaned. Some, however, are formed from ceramic and are a permanent solution that is fixed to your mouth, but these aren’t very common.
The procedure for installing gum veneers is very similar to the procedure for crowns and replacement teeth. The dentist will take a dental impression of the part of the gums the veneer will cover. They then create a prototype of the veneer for proper fitting, the final step is to create the final version that is colored to match the color of your gums while fitting perfectly over the affected area.
If you and your dentist decide on a removable gum veneer, you must follow specific instructions to care for it, or you run the risk of bacteria build up all over again and maybe even worse than before.
Typically, these instructions include cleaning your veneer after meals or at the very least, once per day. You will also be shown proper placement of the veneer in your mouth so that it not only looks aesthetically pleasing but also fits comfortably. The last thing you need is something in your mouth designed to help you but hurts to wear. Continue to see your dentist regularly for scheduled check-ups to ensure the bacteria does not build up again.
Severe Cases Of Gum Recession
Now, if you suffer from a more severe case of gum recession, you should first be examined to determine how bad the problem is, but also for a tooth cleaning. This cleansing is important because it cleans out the gaps, removes tartar and plaque buildup and gives your gums a chance to heal.
Antibiotics may also be prescribed to help fight the bacteria that is causing the gums to recede and gives them a chance to regenerate on their own and the gumline will return to its original position over time.
If the situation is dire and of the most extreme nature there is a surgical option that may be able to correct your problem.
Open Flap Scaling and Root Planning
In this surgical procedure, your dentist actually folds back the damaged tissue, which is what is actually causing the gums to recede. This also allows the built-up bacteria to be exposed so that the dentist can clean all of that out. Then the gum tissue is folded back onto the teeth so that they can heal and regenerate the gum line.
This treatment is designed to reduce the gap between your gums and your teeth so that gap isn’t getting consistent bacteria exposure which can lead to more recession and even bone loss. The procedure not only helps rid you of the bacteria but also stimulates the jawbone fostering bone growth which essential to a healthy smile.
Fighting Receding Gums With The Best Dentist In Houston
When you have receding gums you need a dentist you can trust who will have your best interests in mind, not just the profit. Your dentist should be able to do a few things for you that a substandard dentist in Houston just won’t.
Your dentist should be able to answer you easily if you ask: Can cosmetic dentistry fix receding gums?
They should know to examine your case before answering, and they should also suggest a solution that can fix the problem not just mask it.
Your Dentist should be willing to explain anything and everything about your condition and the options you have for treatment.
Also, a good dentist in Houston will be able to determine accurately if your situation is severe or not so that they can make the most prudent treatment decision for your delicate condition. There is no blanket solution for every gum recession case.
At Best Dental In Houston, Dr. Naderi treats you like you are family and has your dental health as her number one priority. She takes the time to personally invest in each and every patient and does more than just treat your dental issues—she becomes a friend of the family.
Don’t ignore your receding gums—it could easily lead to much more severe conditions that can affect not only your gum health but your overall health as well. Dental health is a very clear indicator of the status of your general health—the two are quite connected and can tell you a lot about your current state if you pay attention to the signs.
Contact us today to book an appointment to have your situation evaluated, we’ll get you in, get a good tooth cleaning performed and then evaluate what is causing your receding gums, the severity of the issue, and the best course of treatment according to your dental needs.