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receding gums- any way to prevent or reverse?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
My first post to the dental forum! I wish I had known about this sooner!

My question is, on a few of my teeth the gums are receded way down. On one tooth, it's low enough that it's really painful and sensitive. This is really worrying me. I switched to an 'ultrasoft' toothbrush and am very gentle when brushing, but it's still bothering me.

A few years back, it seemed like every other person I met was having "gum transplant surgery" for receding gums. It seemed like it was just the treatment du jour, and I really wonder if it's necessary or a real long term fix.

So, is there anything else I can do...any type of toothpaste, brushing techniques, diet changes, supplements??? I'm willing to do anything to avoid surgery or major dental work!

And, what can happen eventually if the gums keep receding?
post #2 of 21
I was just going to post this same question!
post #3 of 21
I have this problem too. My dad had gum transplant surgery, but it's something I'd rather avoid! :
post #4 of 21
The gum surgery just makes really funny looking gums and it's really worth the $$ in my layperson's opinion.

What does your hygenist say? I know sometimes they can scale the teeth and get the gums to stick back on.
post #5 of 21
I have the same problem - on 4 teeth.

I head some things about tooth soap instead of toothpaste....sometimes it is advertised here on MDC.

It was recommended I have the surgery after the baby is born....I am not looking forward to it, but I don't know of any alternatives.
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apricot View Post
The gum surgery just makes really funny looking gums...

I have the same problem on one tooth, however after doing a Google Images search on 'gum surgery', I'm thinking my problem isn't so bad.

Of course, I want to keep it from getting that bad. Subscribing!
post #7 of 21
My dentist told me several years ago that I was brushing too hard and too enthusiastically with my extra soft brush. Apparently any sort of whitening product can also cause your gums to recede.

His suggestion was rather than brushing up and down or in circles, to brush in the direction the teeth grow. Ie on the top, you are gently brushing straight down from just above your gum line. On the bottom you are gently brushing straight up from just below the gum line. HTH Also, vitamin c is supposed to be good for helping gum tissue.

My gums still aren't where I wish they were, but I think it's more to do with dry mouth and acid saliva now than how I'm brushing. Your dentist can also put some bonding around the neck of the tooth for you if the exposure is causing pain- I've had to have this done on a couple.
Good luck!
post #8 of 21
I was at the dentist yesterday, and I was told my gums are receeding. I did some research and I was going to do the followings. Please let me know if this will help??

Don't brush the teeth too hard
start using my very own blend of 3-part baking soda, 1-part salt and some mint EO
Start chewing on xylitol gums/mints
upping my Vit C intake...

Anything else I can do? I have a water-pik thingy, one of my dentist told me not to use, but I have heard from many we should... what are your experience with waterpik?
post #9 of 21
I don't like the piks, personally- they tickle too much or I nearly drown myself. lol

I got some biotene toothpaste which is really helping me as far as my teeth feeling healthier and my mouth being not so dry. I've also started using granulated xylitol to sweeten things, and avoiding any other sweeteners than raw honey, as supposedly it doesn't contribute to making your pH more acidic.

I found some Healthy Dentist brand fluoride rinse and kid's toothpaste on sale at walgreens, so got those too as they both have xylitol in them. I'm not so fond of flouride, but until I get this extraction done it's kind of a necessary evil. Also, both dd's have a bit of pitting, so I'm hoping the occasional topical fluoride will help arrest any further damage.

I think cutting out Listerine and switching to the Biotene toothpaste has really done my mouth a world of good. Apparently, listerine has a pH of like 4.5, which is really acidic- bad for your mouth. Prior to this I found that swishing with some baking soda in warm water was the only thing that would make my teeth stop hurting. So I think a lot of my issues have to do with the pH in my mouth, once I started cutting out some of the conventional crap I'd been doing, my mouth feels 100% better. Except I still need that darn extraction on the 10th, but even that has stopped being a constant shrill pain.

I hope some of my long winded rambling helps, I've just been through so much bs with my dental issues in the last month or two I wanted to offer up anything I've done that's even helped slightly as I know how frustrating and painful this ordeal has been for me.
post #10 of 21
Oh! I forgot one of the better parts- things taste better now! I feel like I can taste things more fully now that my mouth is more in line with what it should be. Makes sense, I guess- more saliva and healthier mouth probably means increased contact with taste buds, etc.

But I had 2 mint newman-o's last night, and could actually taste the different components of the cookie part. I can't really describe it, but it was pretty darn neat. And, no- no lsd or other drugs were involved in this incident. lol
post #11 of 21
When I was a teen, my dentist advised me to chill out on the brushing unless I wanted to have receding gums when I got older.

Maybe brush a little more lightly and use a soft brush??
post #12 of 21
I found out I was brushing too hard as well. I ended up buying a sonicare toothbrush. As long as I don't push against my gums, this works. I believe receeding gums can't be reversed, just prevented from getting worse. My gums have been healthier since switching to the sonicare. My DH has no problem brushing too hard and he just uses an extra soft toothbrush. I say brush lightly and make sure to floss!
post #13 of 21
I have the same problem. I found this website, but I haven't actually done any of it yet, LOL.

http://www.1sthealthsource.com/artic...eth/teeth.html
post #14 of 21
Sounds like me too:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tempestjewel View Post
I have this problem too. My dad had gum transplant surgery, but it's something I'd rather avoid! :
I just visited the dentist this week and asked yet again about gum recession. My dentist suggests these things:
Use a soft toothbrush and brush gently
Keep flossing daily and be sure to get well down on the tooth to scrape off the plaque.
Avoid toothpaste with baking soda (often identified as "whitening") because it's abrasive
Dentist told me that once gums have receeded there's not much to do except try to keep them from receeding any more. If it gets really bad you can always do the surgery (YIKES!). That's about all the helpful advice I was given.
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by grazy101 View Post
I was at the dentist yesterday, and I was told my gums are receeding. I did some research and I was going to do the followings. Please let me know if this will help??

Don't brush the teeth too hard
start using my very own blend of 3-part baking soda, 1-part salt and some mint EO
Start chewing on xylitol gums/mints
upping my Vit C intake...
I read this on a dentist's blog:
Quote:
Baking soda and Peroxide appear to be the worst for gums (followed by anything for whitening or plaque control).
post #16 of 21
I also read that you should avoid baking soda. Even though it is a gentle cleanser (like in your bathtub or whatever), I've used it on my face and there it feels quite gritty! So I could see how it could be too rough on teeth.

My dentist put some bonding material on the tops of my teeth that had receding gums. I either use a sonicare or an extra soft brush. I follow the routine at http://cleanwhiteteeth.com/ although if you don't like fluoride, it's probably not for you. But it might be worth reading the information there. She said that listerine is effective but very acidic so she advises following listerine rinse with Act fluoride rinse to rinse out the listerine and raise the pH of your mouth. I'd think if you don't want to use fluoride, you could follow it with xylitol dissolved in water though. Xylitol is supposed to raise pH.

And I think chewing xylitol gum/mints probably would help. It seems to help everything else.
post #17 of 21
thanks for your replies about baking soda. I will definitely stop using them. Now the question will be what should I use? I guess I will go back to Tom's non-fluoride. I requested sample of the xylitol gum and mints and are planning to order more once I know what they taste like! Haven't have mints/gums in ages, but for my gum, I better learn to like candies again!
post #18 of 21
I'm so glad I found this thread. Mgy um has started receding on one of my teeth and it's sensitive now. I'm going to look into some of the tips. Thanks, guys!
post #19 of 21
Several years ago, my dentist noticed that my gums were receding a bit. She recommended an Oral B or Sonicare electric toothbrush. I've used one ever since, and my gums have completely stopped receding.
post #20 of 21

My dentist is not impressed with waterpik but I decided to try it to anyhow. I find if I put baking soda in the areas of the gums that are sensitive them quickly use the water pick on a medium to low setting using water that is closer to body temperature as opposed to room temperature---my gums get really really clean.  It seems like the sensitive areas start to disappear.  I noticed the baking soda can be irritating to my lips---so I put on chapstick before I start this process. Has anyone else had luck with a waterpik?

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