The Bare Bones of Gum Recession

Many have heard the expression “long in the tooth,” which refers to someone older; but, the phrase originated with horses. A horse’s long teeth and receding gums meant they were older.

For humans, gum recession is not always because of age and can come from many different factors:


First, not all gum recession is avoidable. Genetics can play a huge part while others can just have sensitive or fragile gums. Others do not have enough jaw bone covering the roots of the teeth which can affect the gums. There are, however, ways to minimize these gum recession issues.


Another contributing factor is the ongoing battle of bruxism versus your gums. Bruxism is the act of chronic teeth grinding and can put too much pressure on the gums which causes them to retreat. Bruxism can be minimized with a mouth guard, which can also be helpful to your teeth and jawbones.


The gums also do not want to be treated too roughly. Overbrushing damages gum tissue as does flossing too much. Soft-bristled toothbrushes are the ideal option for removing plaque and massaging the gums yet not causing damage.

Gum Disease

Tartar buildup and gum disease go hand in hand. When plaque is not removed properly by brushing and flossing, it can eventually harden and become tartar. Tartar can only be removed by dental professionals, so skipping your routine dental checkups can lead to a buildup of tartar along the gum line.

The early stages of gum disease, referred to as gingivitis, can be reversed easily by improving your brushing and flossing habits. Your gums may be tender, bleed easily or swollen. At this phase, your jaw bone health is not at risk, but that can change when it increases to periodontitis. Accelerated gum disease will lead to the gums pulling away from the teeth and loss of jaw bone integrity.

Early prevention and care are ideal for combating gum disease. Give us a call today so we can get you on the right path towards healthier gums!