What Is Gum Recession? by Plano, TX dentists Dr. Stephen Bass and Dr. Ellen Hall

What Is Gum Recession?

Gum recession is actually a form of periodontal disease where the gum tissue either shrinks or pulls away from the margin of the enamel. It's going to oftentimes make teeth look longer than they should appear. Gum recession is caused by genetics, it's caused by overaggressive brushing. It can also be led to by malposition of the teeth.

There is a normal position where the gum tissue should be. It should be right at the level where the enamel, or the wide part of your tooth, meets the yellow part of your tooth, which is the dentin or root surface. When the gum recedes, it exposes this dentin, and this is what leads to sensitivity pain and the discoloration of the teeth and gums. There are many treatments for gum recession.

Recently, we've seen an advantage of a procedure called tunneling technique. This is a more conservative way to treat gum recession. There are ways to do this using your own tissue that we take from the roof of your mouth, or we can use donor tissue, which is actually cadaver tissue. There are advantages and disadvantages to every type of procedure, and a consultation with a periodontist is best to see what type of treatment fit your needs.