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What happens when your gums begin receding from your teeth? Gum disease happens when the gum tissue surrounding the teeth pull back from the tooth exposing tooth roots. This action allows gaps to form between the teeth and the gum line. When this happens, harmful plaque-causing bacteria accumulates in these pockets. Hardened plaque can cause long-term problems including tooth loss. This can happen for various reasons, including the following:

— Gum tissue trauma: an injury can cause the gum tissue to recede from the tooth.
— Poor oral hygiene: periodontitis can result from improper brushing and daily flossing.
— Bruxism: gum tissue can be affected by nighttime grinding and clenching of teeth, wearing down tooth enamel.
— Heredity: you are at higher risk for gum disease if one or both of your parents have receding gums.
— Aggressive brushing: Constant wear and tear from brushing harshly can wear down tooth enamel.
— Misaligned teeth: If your bite isn’t correctly aligned the pressure on individual teeth can create gum recession.

Things You Can Do
–When brushing your pearly whites, use a soft-bristled tooth brush and brush gently but thoroughly.
–Reduce harmful bacteria in the mouth by using an antibacterial toothpaste and mouth rinse.
–If you have bruxism, wearing a night guard can help to prevent the wearing down of tooth enamel from clenching and grinding during sleep.
–Regular six month dental cleanings will remove hardened tartar to prevent advanced periodontitis.

If you think you are experiencing gum disease, see Dr. Sletten for an evaluation and begin any necessary treatment. Untreated gum disease can eventually result in tooth loss. Dr. Sletten’s dental team is happy to help you with any questions or concerns. Please call us at 720-851-1676 today!