Do the way your gums look make you uncomfortable or insecure about your smile? Do you worry that your gums have receded and your teeth look too long? Having uneven gums or gums that rest too low or too high on your teeth is a common problem that can be easily fixed by a Cary cosmetic dentist using a procedure called “gum contouring.”
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Causes of Uneven Gums
For a gumline that rests too low and appears to cover too much of your teeth or your teeth look small and misshapen due to your gumline, that is often caused by genetics. It can also be caused by certain medications and health conditions. are much more common, but they can also be much more serious. The gum tissue is meant to cover the vulnerable root of the tooth and keep the tooth firmly in place. Over time, as the gum pulls away from the tooth, the root is exposed. This makes teeth look elongated, but it also can lead to cavities along the gum line, abscess, and even tooth loss.
What Causes Gums to Recede?
There are multiple factors that can lead to a receding gumline, including:
- Age – as you get older, your gums are more likely to pull back
- Hormonal changes, including pregnancy
- Oral infection, tooth decay, or poor dental care
- Poor diet or a vitamin deficiency
- Drug or tobacco use
- Trauma to the mouth
- Consistent trauma to the gums, including grinding teeth, having lip or tongue piercings, or even brushing teeth too hard.
How Do I Know if My Gumline Is Uneven?
If your gums cover too much of your teeth, you may feel your teeth are too small or your gums are too pronounced, and that’s something you can discuss with your cosmetic dentist in Cary. For gums that have receded, you may not have noticed it has happened until your dentist points it out during a routine teeth cleaning. This is just one of the reasons routine dental checkups are so important. Signs you may have a receding gumline include:
- Your teeth seem longer or spaces between your teeth seem larger.
- You notice more tooth sensitivity to hot and cold foods.
- Your gums feel swollen, tender, or bleed when you brush or floss
- The color of your gum tissue has changed to a red or purple color.
- Decay and cavities at the gumline
- Loose teeth or a change in how your teeth fit together.
It’s essential to not wait to see a dentist when you experience any of these symptoms, as mild gum recession can lead to gingivitis, while the more severe issues are a sign of gum disease and periodontitis. Periodontitis is an infection that damages the tissue and bone supporting the tooth, leading to tooth loss.
Can A Cosmetic Dentist Treat Uneven or Receding Gums?
Thanks to innovations in dental technology and surgical procedures, an uneven gumline and receding gums can be fixed with gum contouring. There are typically two types: contouring performed by cosmetic dentists to fix a longer gumline, and gum contouring performed as a medically necessary procedure when the gumline has receded. A family dentist may do this or a periodontist may perform the procedure, instead.
Fixing a “Gummy” Smile
For longer gumlines, the cosmetic dentist will not just cut back excess tissue, as it will grow back. In some cases, the bone itself may need to be reshaped to change how the gum lies against the tooth. This is often called “crown lengthening.”
Fixing Receded Gums
In the case that the gums have receded, a dentist or periodontist can add gum tissue through grafting. This involves removing healthy gum tissue, sometimes from the roof of the mouth, in order to rebuild and reshape the gumline. This protects the root, reduces sensitivity, and can prevent tooth loss.
Is Gum Contouring Right for Me?
Gum contouring, whether it’s reshaping a long gumline or grafting tissue to repair receding gums, is not a difficult procedure for an experienced Cary dentist. It can often be done quickly, and recovery time is short. The benefits include:
- Straighter, more proportionate looking teeth
- Improved dental health
- Attractive, even gumline
- Reduced risk of gum disease and tooth decay
At Beavers Family Dentistry in Cary, we can help you improve the look and health of your teeth and gums with gum contouring.
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We want to help you experience improved dental health and confidence! Reach out to us today by filling out the form below or calling us to schedule your consultation!