Gum recession is common in adults, and it can cause teeth to become sensitive over time. You can get a gum graft to repair severely recessed gums, but minimal gum recession only requires an adjustment to your oral hygiene routines. If you have slight gum recession, the guide below will show you how to care for your teeth and prevent further gum recession in the future.
Brush Your Teeth, Not Your Gums
Most people brush over their gums when they brush their teeth because this is where most plaque starts to build up. When you have gone through gum recession though, brushing your gums could make it worse. When you go to brush your teeth, try not to push down on your gums. Lightly brush the bottom of your teeth, minimizing the amount of pressure you put on your gums. This may seem unnatural at first, but you will get used to it over time.
Use A Soft Bristle Toothbrush
Soft bristle toothbrushes are great for sensitive teeth, and they can also work well for gum recession. The bristles on these toothbrushes are designed to fight against plaque without being overly abrasive. You will still need to be careful with how you brush your teeth after gum recession, but this will minimize the damage you do to your gums.
Floss Your Teeth Carefully
Flossing is an important part of oral hygiene, even if your gums are sensitive. If you experience a lot of bleeding around your gums when you floss, you may want to use a Waterpik instead of traditional nylon floss. This won’t do quite as good of a job getting rid of bacteria and food particles between your teeth, but it will still be better than not flossing at all. Waterpiks use a pulsating stream of water to get in between teeth, and they can be great additions to traditional brushing and flossing.
Avoid Harsh Mouthwashes
Before you swig that Listerine you’ve had on your counter for forever, you need to think about how your mouth is going to feel afterward. Chances are your gums will make your whole mouth sensitive to the harsh ingredients in most mouthwashes. Get a rinse that is specifically formulated for sensitive teeth and gums, and you won’t be in pain every time you brush. Alternatively, you could make your own mouthwash and customize it to your smile’s specific needs.
With the right dental care early on, you should be able to protect your smile from future gum recession and preserve your smile for years to come.