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What Causes Gum Recession (and What Can You Do About It)?

Mar 15, 2023
Gum disease causes many painful symptoms, but when it becomes advanced, you’re at risk for tooth loss and other problems. Learn about what leads to gum recession, how your habits impact its development, and an exciting treatment for it here.

If you’re experiencing mouth sensitivity when you get your teeth cleaned at the dentist, when you eat or drink cold or hot food and beverages, or when you’re brushing and flossing at home, it might surprise you to learn that the problem may not be your teeth at all — it might be your gums.

Gum recession is an oral health condition that is extremely common, but concerning, since it puts you at risk for tooth and bone loss.

The respected provider team at Plaza Dental Group treats gum recession and a host of other conditions armed with advanced training and years of experience, as well as compassion. They realize that many patients feel anxious about visiting the dentist, and the entire Plaza Dental Group team is dedicated to making you feel at ease from the moment you enter our office in West Des Moines, Iowa.

How does gum recession develop?

Gum recession is basically the result of an infection. When you have advanced gum disease, or periodontitis, your gums start to pull away from you teeth, which leaves your tooth root, jaw, and the alveolar bone, which is where your teeth are implanted, more exposed to infection.

Tooth loss can follow if the problem isn’t treated.

We’ve talked about the uncomfortable symptoms of gum recession, but there are things you can do — or avoid doing — that make it more likely you’ll suffer from the problem: 

  • Being overzealous about brushing and using too much pressure
  • The opposite problem, failing to brush enough, leads to plaque and tartar problems.
  • Tobacco use, whether smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Tongue or lip piercings
  • Tongue or jaw misalignment problems
  • Sustaining a traumatic injury to your mouth
  • Grinding your teeth

Genetics can play a role in gum recession, too. Research shows that nearly one-third of Americans could be susceptible to gum disease, even if they practice excellent oral hygiene.

We also know now that normal hormonal changes women go through during their lifetimes can make them vulnerable to gum recession. These include pregnancy and menopause.  

What if my dentist diagnoses me with gum recession?

If you are found to have gum recession, suffer with its painful symptoms, and worry about whether anything can be done to address it, there’s good news. 

Plaza Dental Group offers an innovative treatment for gum recession called the Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique, and we have a provider who has received specialized training and gained specific expertise with the minimally invasive procedure. It’s revolutionary in that it frees you from needing to get painful and complex surgical procedures in order to alleviate your gum recession symptoms.

Chao Pinhole treatment is a noninvasive procedure in which your dentist makes minute punctures in your diseased gum tissue — hence the treatment’s name — and loosens it so they can then adequately cover your exposed tooth roots, which are the source of gum recession pain and sensitivity.

This treatment is a game changer because previously, the only way to remedy painful gum recession was through uncomfortable and anxiety-producing procedures that required incisions, stitches, and even grafting. 

Our patients have enthusiastically embraced Chao Pinhole treatment because you’re in and out of our office, the treatment isn’t painful, and there’s minimal post-treatment downtime required, since there’s no bleeding or swelling to contend with. 

If you’re having pain and other symptoms of gum recession, make a plan to end the misery today by calling the Plaza Dental Group office at 515-978-0941 or using our convenient online booking tool.