While we’re used to the Atlantic receding at low tide here in Melbourne, it can be a mystery why our gums are receding. Here are some causes of gum recession:
Periodontal disease—This is the main cause of gum recession, as described above.
Genetics —Some people are simply more susceptible. Studies show that 30 percent of the population may be predisposed to gum disease.
Aggressive tooth brushing—This is too much of a good thing. If you’re a little too strong with your brushing, it can make your gums recede and it can damage your tooth enamel.
Insufficient dental care—Cursory or minimal home hygiene makes it easy for the sticky film that is continually forming on our teeth, plaque, to harden into tartar. Once tartar starts to build, it will start irritating your gums and this makes them recede.
Hormonal changes—Fluctuations in female hormone levels during pregnancy, menopause, and puberty can make the gums more sensitive and more likely to recede.
Cigarettes—Smokers have more plaque that is difficult to remove.
Grinding and clenching—If you’re stressed out and are clenching your teeth or grinding them at night, this leads to gum recession.
Misaligned bite—When the teeth don’t come together effectively and aligned, this places more force on the teeth and gums, leading to recession.