Have you ever heard the expression “long in the tooth?” It means someone has been around for a while. It was coined because, in older people, natural gum recession exposes more of the teeth. In other words, they were literally “long in the tooth.” Your Lake Orion implant dentist, Dr. Brad Greenfield, talks about what older people can do to slow down that natural gum recession.
Aging and Gum Recession
Gum recession is a problem because the more the gums recede, the more the spaces between the teeth are exposed. These spaces are perfect breeding grounds for bacteria, which can grow and multiply and lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Unfortunately, gum recession is a natural by-product of aging, and nothing can be done to stop it completely. However, the recession can be slowed down by practicing good oral hygiene.
Gum Disease: A Cause and Result
Gum disease often leads to gum recession. Unfortunately, the bacteria that grow in the spaces once occupied by the newly receded gums can lead to more gum disease. Therefore, it’s important for older people to make sure that they practice good dental hygiene. Be sure to brush with a high-quality toothbrush twice a day and to floss once a day. Doing that cleans your mouth of the gum-devouring bacteria.
Avoiding Acidic Food and Drink
If your gums have already receded, it would be a good idea to avoid food or drinks containing acids. While tooth enamel can usually handle the acids found in wine, orange juice, carbonated soft drinks, and lemonade, the dentin in the roots are much more vulnerable. The acids can also accelerate the rate of recession. If you do eat or drink something with acid, be sure to drink water with it to help wash the acid away.
Another possible cause of gum recession is teeth grinding, or bruxism. Teeth grinding can cause a number of other problems, including tooth abrasion. If gum recession is suspected to be caused by teeth grinding, the dentist may recommend a nightguard to wear during sleep.
See your Lake Orion Implant Dentist
Are you concerned about your gum recession? At Lake Orion Family Dentistry, we can discuss the best options for you, as well as providing comprehensive dental care for the whole family. Contact our Lake Orion dental implant office by calling (248) 693-6213 to schedule an appointment today. We proudly serve families from Lake Orion, Clarkston, Auburn Hills, Oxford, and Rochester Hills, the 48360 zip code, as well as many other areas in Michigan.