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Affiliations

  • American Dental Association
  • New York County Dental Society
  • The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry
  • American Academy of Implant Dentistry
  • Consumers Research Council of America
  • The Best in New York Medicine, 2016 Top Dentist
 

Restoring Health through Gum Treatment

Gum Recession Manhattan

Causes of Gum Recession and Cervical Abrasions

Gum recession is an incredibly widespread problem that dentists diagnose and treat on a daily basis.  It is important to thoroughly examine the affected areas and make an accurate diagnosis of the actual underlying problem.  Once the cause of the gum recession has been determined, surgical and non surgical procedures to halt the progress of the recession and prevent it from occurring in the future.  The most common causes of gingival recession are:

Overaggressive brushing.  Over brushing can almost be as dangerous to the gums as too little.  Brushing too hard or brushing with a hard-bristled toothbrush can erode the tooth enamel at the gum line and irritate or inflame gum tissue.

Poor oral hygiene.  When brushing and flossing are performed improperly or not at all, a plaque build up can begin to affect the teeth.  The plaque contains various bacterial toxins which can promote infection and erode the underlying jawbone.

Chewing tobacco.  Any kind of tobacco use has devastating effects on the entire oral cavity.  Chewing tobacco in particular aggravates the gingival lining of the mouth and causes gum recession if used continuously.

Periodontal disease.  Periodontal disease can be a result of improper oral hygiene or caused by systemic diseases such as diabetes.  The excess sugars in the mouth and narrowed blood vessels experienced by diabetics create a perfect environment for oral bacteria.  The bacterium causes an infection which progresses deeper and deeper into the gum and bone tissue eventually resulting in tooth loss.

The following signs and symptoms may indicate gum recession:

  • Sensitive teeth-Teeth become sensitive to hot and cold or to sweet, sour or spicy foods.  If the cementum covering the root is not protected any more by the gums it is easily abraded exposing the dentin tubules to external stimuli.
  • Teeth may also appear longer than normal (a larger part of the crown is visible if gums are receding).
  • The roots of the tooth are exposed and visible.
  • Change on the tooth’s color (due to the color difference between enamel and cementum)
  • Spaces between teeth seem to grow (actually the space is the same but it seems larger because the gums do not fill it anymore)
  • Cavities below the gum line

If the gum recession is caused by gingivitis, the following symptoms may also be present

  • Puffy, red or swollen  (inflamed) gums
  • Gum bleeding while brushing or flossing
  • Bad breath (halitosis)

Treatment of Gum Recession

Every case of gum recession is slightly different and therefore many treatments are available.  The nature of the problem which caused the recession to begin with needs to be addressed.

If overly aggressive brushing techniques are eroding the gums, a softer toothbrush and a gentler brushing technique should be used.  If poor oral hygiene is a problem, prophylaxis (professional dental cleaning) may be recommended to rid the gum pockets of debris and bacteria.  In the case of a severe calculus (tartar) build up, scaling and root planning will be performed to heal the gingival inflammation and clean the teeth.

Once the cause of the gingival recession has been addressed, surgery of a more cosmetic or restorative nature may be recommended.  Gum tissue regeneration and gum grafting are two excellent ways to restore natural symmetry to the gums and make the smile look more aesthetically pleasing.

Cervical Abrasions (Gum Recession)

Our office does restore many teeth with cervical abrasions.  These are often caused by excessive occlusion or tooth brush abrasion.  The materials we use are highly stain resistant and can match the exact color of the tooth.  Many times a patient with gum recession and cervical abrasions has a tooth that is sensitive.  These bonded fillings (coatings) usually totally reverse the sensitivity.

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Jack Schwartz DDS MS

134 West 58th Street Suite 105
New York , New York 10019

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