Common Causes Of Gum Recession

Gum recession (or gingival recession) is a dental condition in which the gums pull away from the teeth and reveal the teeth roots. Gum recession is an aesthetic problem, increases the risk of dental hypersensitivity, and also increases the risk of tooth damage. Knowing the common causes of gum recession can help you prevent and deal with the problem.

Below are some of the reasons your gums may pull away from your teeth.

Gum Disease

You develop gum disease when oral bacteria attacks your gum tissues. Poor dental hygiene is the main cause of gum disease. If you don't brush and floss regularly, the organic wastes on your teeth encourage bacteria to grow and the bacteria can attack your gums. If you don't get early treatment, the bacteria can eat away your gums and cause them to pull away from the teeth. A high level of oral hygiene plus immediate treatment for gum disease will prevent this complication of gum disease.

Hormonal Fluctuations

In women, hormonal changes also increase the risk of gum recession. The hormonal changes increase blood flow to the gums, and the increased blood flow causes heightened sensitivity. The hypersensitivity makes the gum easily irritable; anything from brushing to relatively minor bacterial infections can cause gum recession if the gums are hypersensitive. The effects of hormonal changes are particularly high during puberty, menopause, pregnancy, and for those who are using birth control pills.

Improper Brushing

The gum tissues are relatively sensitive. If you use a hard-bristled toothbrush or brush with too much force, you bruise the gums and affect their vitality. Over time, the gums will recede away from the teeth if you continue with the same brushing styles. Changing to soft-bristled toothbrushes and being gentle when brushing can halt the gum recession.

Hereditary Factors

Some people are more susceptible to gum recession more than others due to hereditary factors. In such people, the gums are naturally sensitive and can easily be irritated by outside factors. If you are that unlucky, your chances of escaping gum recession are slim, but heightened dental hygiene and quick intervention can minimize the problem.


Lastly, chronic teeth grinding and clenching (that has the dental term bruxism) can also cause your gums to pull away from your teeth. If you clinch and grind your teeth all the time, you place unnaturally strong forces on your teeth. Such strong forces affect the connection between your gums and your teeth, allowing the gums to pull away with relative ease.

To learn more, contact a dentist in your area.