Gum recession is a common side effect of braces that occurs when the braces pressure the gum tissue or when the teeth are forced into new positions. In most cases, gum recession will disappear once the braces are removed. However, it may persist even after treatment is completed in some cases.
Today’s blog will help you learn more about receding gums caused by braces!
What is Gum Recession?
Gum recession is a condition in which the gums around the teeth start to pull away from the tooth, exposing the root. Your roots are typically covered and protected by your gums. Many people find that their teeth are more sensitive to hot, cold, spicy, sweet, or acidic foods when the roots of their teeth become exposed.
Wearing braces is most commonly responsible for gum recession, but it can happen for various reasons.
Gum recession due to braces is caused by the pressure of the braces on the gums, causing it to recede. In some cases, this pressure can cause the gums to become inflamed and bleed. In other cases, the braces may force the teeth into new positions, which can also cause gum recession.
How Common is Gum Recession from Braces?
Gum recession from braces is relatively common. In fact, 400,000 people in the U.S. develop gum recession from braces yearly. However, it is usually not a serious condition, with most people not even recognizing mild gum recession. Severe cases, however, can be harmful to your dental health and can put you at risk of tooth loss in the future.
Why Do Braces Cause Gum Recession?
Braces can cause gum recession in two ways: either by putting pressure on the gums or by forcing the teeth into new positions.
In some cases, people may be born with a small jawbone or have missing teeth, causing the remaining teeth to be crowded. When braces are put on, this crowding becomes worse and can lead to gum recession.
People who have braces are also more likely to develop gum disease because it is challenging to keep the teeth and gums clean when you have braces. Gum disease is a bacterial infection that damages the gums and can lead to tooth loss.
How Can I Prevent Gum Recession from Braces?
There are a few things you can do to prevent gum recession from braces:
- Keep your teeth and gums clean: Brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and using an antibacterial mouthwash can help reduce your risk of gum disease.
- Avoid hard foods: Chewing on hard candy, ice, or nuts can damage your gums, making them more likely to recede.
- Use a braces guard: A braces guard is a rubber or silicone pad that covers the brackets on your braces. It helps protect the gums from irritation caused by braces.
- Avoid tobacco-based products: Not only does smoking affect your overall health, but smokers also have a much higher risk of contracting gum disease.
- See your dentist regularly: Regular dental check-ups will allow your dentist to catch and treat any early signs of gum disease before it becomes severe.
Treatment for Gum Recession
If you have gum recession from braces, wait until your braces are removed. In most cases, the gums will grow back once the braces no longer put pressure on them.
However, the gums may not grow back at all in some cases. If this happens, you may need to see a periodontist for treatment. A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in treating conditions of the gums and bones around the teeth.
There are a few different treatments that a periodontist can use to treat gum recession:
- Soft tissue grafts: A small piece of gum tissue is taken from another part of your mouth and placed over the area of receding gums.
- Bone grafts: If the bone around your teeth has been damaged by gum disease, a small amount of bone may be taken from another part of your body and placed in the affected area.
- Tissue-stimulating proteins: These proteins help promote the growth of new gums.
- Brush biopsy: This procedure removes a small sample of gum tissue from the affected area to be examined for signs of gum disease.
It’s essential to pay close attention to your gums and regularly see your dentist or orthodontist when wearing braces. Gum recession is relatively common in people with braces, although not a serious condition.
Can I Wear Braces if My Gums Have Already Receded?
Of course, especially if you only have mild gum recession! However, if your gum recession is severe, you may need surgery to correct it before getting braces.
If you have braces and notice that your gums are receding, be sure to see your dentist so that they can monitor the situation and make sure that it doesn’t worsen. Also, make sure to maintain good oral health as a preventative measure. Remember, prevention is better than cure!
Does Gum Recession Mean I Shouldn’t Get Braces?
While gum recession is something to be aware of if you have braces, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get them! Just be sure to take care of your teeth and gums to avoid gradual gum recession. Consult with your dentist to explore your options.
If, however, you are suffering from severe gum recession, there are surgical options available to treat it. Just ask your orthodontist!
Choose Patuxent Orthodontics for your Orthodontic Treatment!
Gum recession is a common, although mild, issue among people with braces. If you’re considering braces, be sure to consult with your orthodontist about the best type of braces for you and your smile journey. And, as always, practice good oral hygiene habits to prevent gum recession gradually. Prevention is always better than cure!
Contact Patuxent Orthodontics if you think that orthodontic care may be a solution to your dental woes. Whether you want to learn more about the benefits of orthodontic care or simply have questions about the process, use our live chat or call (240) 802-7217 or send us a message through our contact us page to connect with our friendly staff today to book a free consultation! Our office, located at 44220 Airport View Dr., Hollywood, MD 20636, proudly serves Maryland’s Patuxent area, as well as the Greater Washington DC area. So, if you’re residing in Hollywood, Wildewood, or Leonardtown and are looking for one of the best orthodontists in Maryland, don’t hesitate to visit our office! We also invite you to keep up with our blog to get answers to many of the frequently asked questions about maintaining sparkling oral health and follow us on social media to become a part of our smiling community!