Receding gums occur when your gum tissue start wearing off and it seems that the gums have receded backwards. This will make a large area of your tooth surface visible. If your gums recede, gaps start forming between the gum line and teeth, where bacteria could thrive and develop.
If receding gums are not contained, the root of your teeth could get exposed, leading to pain and causing tooth sensitivity. Eventually, the damage to the supportive tissue and even to the teeth’s bone structures could mean losing your teeth.
Symptoms of Receding Gums
Gum recession may be a quite common dental problem, most of us who have it may notice it too late because it is a very slow process. It takes place at a very gradual pace. If you find that your teeth are already sensitive, you must check them for any signs of receding gums. Sensitivity is among the earliest signs of having receding gums.
You should also have your teeth checked if you notice that any tooth starts appearing to be larger than before. You should seek treatment without waiting because this is a clear sign of receding gum. So the symptoms of this problem are as following:
- Sensitivity in the tooth
- Your tooth seeming to be larger than earlier
- Tooth ache or pain
What Causes Receding Gums
Receding gums themselves usually mean there’s some kind of gum disease. But they could also be caused due to many other causes as given below:
- Gum diseases – Especially periodontal diseases, which are bacterial infections occurring in the gums. Such infections will cause damage to the gum tissue and the supportive bone, which leads to gum recession and even other issues.
- Poor oral hygiene – There can be buildup of plaque on your teeth if you are not brushing or flossing properly. Such plaque could then develop into calculus, also known as tartar. This is a hard substance between the teeth and it is likely to cause receding gums.
- Aggressive Brushing – This is opposite to the earlier cause where you are likely to get receding gums if you are not brushing properly. But if you are brushing aggressively, it may also cause this problem. It will wear away your teeth’s enamel, which will cause the gums to recede.
- Heredity – Even heredity can be a cause at times. Unfortunately, if you are suffering from receding gums because of your genes, there is not much you could do for preventing it.
- Hormonal Changes – Sometimes this may be the cause behind receding gums, more so in the case of women. Hormonal changes can increase the sensitivity and vulnerability of the gums.
- Smoking – This can not only cause different types of diseases like lung disease and cancer, it can also result in receding gums. Anyone who consumes any kind of tobacco is likely to have sticky plaque developing on their teeth. It could further cause gum recession.
- Grinding/Clenching Teeth – Gums can also recede if you misuse your teeth (grind or clench them). This will put pressure and cause the gums to recede. If you apply as much force on your teeth, such as when eating something, could also result in receding gums. This is usually the case in those who have crooked teeth that don’t fit well together when eating.
- Lip/Tongue Piercing – Even piercing lips/tongue could be the reason behind gum recession. It is caused as the jewelry worn after the piercing could rub against your gums, causing the wearing of the gum tissue.
Medically Treating Receding Gums
If you are able to notice the receding gums before it’s too late, your dentist may be able to treat the problem using deep cleaning processes like root planing and tooth scaling. Your dentist could remove the tartar and plaque which has developed on the teeth and root surfaces under the gum line.
But if you were late in detecting your receding gums, your dentist may recommend gum surgery for repairing the damage already caused due to receding gums. The procedures in such surgeries can include pocket depth reduction, soft tissue graft, or regenerating lost bone/tissue of the gums and teeth.
But if you don’t desire to undergo such dental treatments, it will be best to use home remedies that can help in treating the receding gums. However, if there is some infection in your gums, you should go to a dentist first to check the depth of bacterial invasion.
You may require a dentists’ help if the gum recession has reached advanced phase. If not, you can rely on home remedies for treating your receding gums. Your gums can also be grown back with the right dental care and some natural remedies.
Growing Back Receding Gums
Our gums are soft tissues which cover our bones which provide support to our teeth to ensure that they remain firmly in their place. The tissue even covers the teeth roots. Because of all the causes described above, our gums recede and our teeth and the root get exposed. But with proper dental hygiene, some home remedies (such as oil pulling) and diet, you can promote your gums for growing back.
Natural Home Remedies for Receding Gums
These remedies use the basic ingredients available in your kitchen and sometimes spices and herbs for treating and growing back the receding gums.
Green Tea to Grow Back Receding Gums
Green tea offers so many health benefits. It also helps in treating receding gums. Green tea is already known for its high antioxidant content that help in warding off various diseases by fighting free radicals. When free radicals are present in your mouth, they could result in causing periodontal disease, which could further cause receding gums. The catechins (another form of antioxidant), helps in fighting already existing periodontal disease. They help in strengthening the bond between the teeth and gums. Green tea has anti-inflammatory benefits that help in reducing swelling in the gums. Swelling could hinder the proper healing of the gums and treatment of oral diseases.
How to use: prepare 1 cup of revitalizing green tea and drink everyday in the morning.
Aloe Vera to Treat Receding Gums
Aloe vera is also a natural and strong anti-inflammatory agent. This herb is well known as an herbal remedy for many types of skin problems. It provides these benefits because of its anti-inflammatory and cell-repairing powers. Aloe vera is effective against receding gums, not only for reducing gum inflammation, but also for activating those cells which are essential for repairing tissues. Its antibacterial properties are also helpful in avoiding infections of the mouth.
How to Use:
You will need aloe vera gel.
- You can use aloe vera gel in two ways for treating receding gums – you can use it as a mouthwash or for brushing.
- Take some of the gel on the toothbrush to brush your teeth and gums after your normal brushing and flossing in the morning and night. Make sure to wash your mouth after waiting for 3 to 5 minutes after the aloe vera gel brush.
- You can also use aloe vera gel in place of your mouthwash. Once you have brushed in the morning, mix some water and aloe vera gel to create a consistent mixture that can be easily swirled in your mouth. Use it as a mouthwash and repeat daily.
Sesame Oil – Oil Pulling for Treating Receding Gums
Oil pulling has been used traditionally for treating different kinds of oral diseases. It is also well known for helping in healing cavities. Oil pulling could also help in preventing and reversing receding gums.
Sesame oil has anti-inflammatory and several other benefits that help in removing toxic elements from the mouth while also minimizing plaque development. Buildup of plaque may also contribute towards receding gums. Sesame oil will work by creating a protective coating on teeth and helps in preventing buildup of plaque. Oil pulling is recommended by Ayurveda for curing various oral diseases and also to improve nutrient absorption in the body.
How to Use Sesame Oil:
- Warm the oil but don’t heat it. It should only be warmed.
- After you have brushed teeth, put some of the oil into your mouth.
- Swirl and swish around in your mouth for a few minutes.
- Start with 30-60 seconds of oil pulling but increase the duration gradually.
- With time you should be pulling oil for 15 to 20 minutes.
Oil Pulling Using Coconut Oil for Treating Receding Gums
Coconut oil has amazing antimicrobial properties. So you will find that it is of great use in the prevention and treatment of different infections existing in your mouth. It is already known that bacterial and various other oral infections could also cause receding gums. Coconut oil could prove to be a remarkable remedy for fighting it. Coconut oil pulling can not only help in preventing tooth decay and healing cavity, it can also help in treatment of most gum problems including receding gums.
It is recommended to use virgin coconut oil for this treatment.
How to Use:
- Once you have brushed your teeth, use coconut oil as a mouthwash. Do this daily.
- Put coconut oil into your mouth. Swirl and swish it thoroughly. In the initial phase, you can do so for 1 to 2 minutes, but increase the duration with time.
- You should pull coconut oil for 15 to minutes every day to help treat and prevent various kinds of oral diseases.
- It may also help in growing back your receding gums.
Eucalyptus to Treat Receding Gums
Essential oils will carry the essential properties of their herbs from which they are made. The fact is that they can have much higher strength compared to their herb of origin. This is the reason why you will need only 2 drops of essential oils for curing a condition. The same goes for eucalyptus oil which is used for curing receding gums.
Eucalyptus oil is a highly effective germicide. It can kill all germs in your mouth and protect you against oral diseases that could cause gum recession. The anti-inflammatory properties of this oil also help in reducing gum swelling. But make sure that it is never applied in undiluted form because it is excessively strong for your gums’ soft tissue.
How to Use:
You will need 1 to 2 drops of eucalyptus oil and 1 to 2 tablespoon of water.
- Add 1-2 drops of eucalyptus oil in water and mix properly.
- Dip toothbrush or fingers in the diluted oil (choose toothbrush with soft bristles).
- Gently massage the gums with the oil for a few minutes.
- Then wash your mouth using water.
It will help in curing and preventing gum recession and it will also help in stimulating new gum tissue growth.
Use Myrrh for Treating Receding Gums
The resin sourced from Myrrh tree has long been used in the treatment of various diseases of the gum and mouth. It can help in not only stopping gum recession, it can also prevent further damages to the gums.
How to Use:
You will need myrrh and water for this treatment.
- Take myrrh (powered form or resin).
- Add some water and myrrh powder.
- Mix thoroughly to create a paste.
- Massage the gums using this myrrh paste for some minutes.
- A toothbrush can also be used for brushing teeth with the paste.
Use Clove to Treat Receding Gums
Clove oil has been used for treating oral diseases for centuries, especially for toothache. Clove is also known for its remarkable disinfectant benefits. Its amazing anti-bacterial properties are helpful in keeping a germ-free mouth, which is essential for treating any kind of oral disease. Clove oil also features anti-inflammatory benefits, and helps in reducing any swelling in the gums.
Periodontal diseases can be treated only if you are able to diminish inflammation. Remember how chewing on the clove gives you a numbing effect in your mouth. Here is a great method for using clove for any kind of oral disease.
Once you have taken your meals, chew one clove while ensuring that all its contents (oil) reach the nook and corner of your mouth. It will also help in removing bad smells. You could also use clove oil for the purpose.
How to Use:
You will need 1 to 2 drops of clove oil.
- Apply 1 to 2 drops of clove oil on your finger tips and gently massage on your gums.
- Do this for a few minutes and repeat 1 to 3 times every day.
Precaution: Make sure to consult the doctor before you use clove oil if you are already taking blood clotting medication.
Lemon Oil to Treat Receding Gums
Lemon has mild antiseptic and antibacterial properties, which can be of great help for keeping your mouth free from germ. Lemon is also a great remedy to grow back your receding gums. It works by stimulating the growth of new gum tissue.
Lemon also has a refreshing smell that helps in keeping away bad breath. But keep in mind that as lemon is acidic, using it regularly can cause damage to your teeth enamel. So you should be using lemon oil just once a week.
It is recommended that you in place of the excessively strong lemon essential oil, you should be preparing your own lemon oil. It will help in eliminating the damaging effects on your tooth enamel.
How to Make Lemon Oil to Treat Recede Gums?
How to Use:
You will need quarter to half cup olive oil and lemon juice from a half or one fresh lemon.
- Take a jar with lid and pour the olive oil in it.
- Squeeze the lemon juice and mix it into the oil.
- Now cover it with the lid, shake properly and keep in a place away from light for preparing an infusion.
- Allow it to infuse for a few weeks before it is used for improving oral health.
- Make sure it is shaken daily.
- You can use the lemon oil after 3 to 4 weeks.
- Take a little bit of the lemon oil on your toothbrush or finger and gently massage your gums for a few minutes.
Repeat this just once a week. You may do this twice a week but that is all.
How Can You Prevent Gum Recession?
There is an old adage – prevention is better than cure and it never goes wrong. As more and more people are suffering from receding gums, you should be taking precautions and take proper care of your oral health. It will help in preventing receding gums and also various oral diseases. So what can you do to care for your teeth and gums to prevent periodontal diseases? The following tips will help you in taking proper oral care and prevention of gum recession.
Follow Healthy Oral Hygiene
Take proper care of your oral hygiene to prevent gum recession and various other oral diseases.
- No aggressive brushing.
- Use only gentle and circulation motion strokes for brushing.
- Don’t push gums upwards when brushing. Rather brush the along the gum line.
- Avoid using large toothbrush or hard bristles. Choose a small-head brush with soft bristles.
- Make sure to floss. Don’t skip it because it is important for removal of plaque.
- It will be best to brush and floss after all your meals. You should at least rinse with water after your meals.
Clean Your Mouth with Mouthwash
When you use mouthwash daily, it will help in keeping away germs from the oral cavity. Because infection is a major cause behind receding gums, make sure to do mouthwash every day. A germicidal mouthwash can be easily bought from the market, but if you want to keep it natural, you can prepare your own natural mouthwash with essential oils.
- Add 1 to 2 drops of essential oils (clove, sage, peppermint, or tea tree oil) into quarter to half cup of water.
- Use the natural mouthwash for washing your mouth.
- Use it for at least 60 seconds to swirl around within your mouth.
- Hydrogen peroxide is also a safe substance to use and it helps in protecting your mouth against infection. It should not be used as such. Dilute it in water before washing your mouth.
It is recommended to use mouthwash after all your meals. Otherwise, use mouthwash in the morning and at night.
Drink Plenty of Water
Water is important for overall health. do you know that drinking good amount of water could also help in maintaining healthy gums. It helps in preventing receding gums due to the following reasons:
- Drinking more water helps in flushing out toxins from your body, including your mouth. This will help in preventing bacterial infection in the mouth, thus further preventing gum recession.
- Water helps in cleaning mouth. It will be best to clean your mouth after you have consumed anything. It will help in removing food particles which are stuck in the oral cavity. Even if you are unable to rinse it, try to swish around a little water within your mouth at times. Don’t worry if you swallow the water because the food particles can enter your stomach and get digested or removed in the form of waste (only if you are unable to throw it away).
No More Junk Foods & Eat Only Healthy Foods
Health food can boost your overall health and immunity. This means you will be less likely to get any infection. But junk foods will provide bacteria and various microbes all the opportunities for growing and thriving in your mouth. This can cause infection and gum recession.
- Consume more fruits and veggies. Eat those which have high levels of nutrients such as vitamin C, which is extremely important for your gums’ health. It helps in reducing inflammation of gums, preventing oral diseases, and promoting gum regeneration. You should consume more pineapple, strawberries, oranges and veggies like cauliflower, broccoli, and asparagus.
- Don’t drink sugary beverages such as cold drinks and sugary foods. They enable easier bacterial growth.
- Avoid different kinds of processed foods, alcohol, caffeine, and foods made of white flour. These foods are neither good for your general health nor for oral health.
Inquire About Supplements from Your Doctor for Preventing Receding Gums
Even deficiency of essential nutrients is a major factor behind bad oral health and gum recession. Visit your doctor and get yourself tested if you have vitamin/other nutrients’ deficiency. If you are deficient in any nutrients, ask your doctor to prescribe some supplements. The following supplements can be helpful in the prevention of gum recession:
- Calcium – required for proper dental and bone health.
- Ginkgo biloba – helps in boosting blood circulation, required for healthy gums.
- Vitamin C – anti-inflammatory agent that helps in improving immunity that helps in protecting against infections.
- Zinc – strengthens immunity, which will help protect against catching infections, including oral diseases. Your gums will become healthy and the chances of receding gums will be eliminated.
- Coenzyme Q10 – helps in promoting cell renewal. It helps in growing back your receding gums.