Jaw pain, broken teeth, damaged enamel—teeth grinding has many ill effects on your oral health. It also puts your gum health at risk and may be a factor in patients with receding gums.
If your teeth appear longer than they used to be or the gums feel sore when brushing, consider whether a teeth grinding habit may be part of the problem.
At My Family Dentistry, we can examine your teeth and gums to help determine if you’re a teeth grinder and whether the habit is causing gum recession. And we can also help you take steps to solve the problem and restore your gum tissue back to great health.
Gum Damage Caused by Teeth Grinding
Your gums absorb a lot of the pressure when you grind your teeth. The teeth push into the gums and wiggle around at the gum line, damaging the gum tissue slowly over time. All that stress and inflammation causes loss of gum tissue and eventually a receded gum line.
Significant teeth clenching or grinding can also damage the enamel of your teeth around the gum line. This also contributes to poor gum health and the appearance of long teeth with notches or indentations appearing on the teeth just below the gums.
Teeth Grinding and Gum Disease
In some cases, teeth grinders wind up with cracked and damaged teeth. Every place where your teeth are made crooked or cracked is another place where bacteria can take hold and form plaque.
So, in addition to the direct stress on the gums caused by teeth grinding, you may also have issues putting you at risk of developing serious gum disease. Gum recession is one of the symptoms of periodontitis, the advanced form of gum disease.
How to Stop Teeth Grinding and Reverse Gum Recession
Many of our patients have no idea why they grind their teeth—it’s just a habit, or they do it in their sleep. For many people, however, teeth grinding can be traced to stress. It’s important to address the underlying issues while also taking proactive steps to protect your teeth and gums.
A night guard can help your receding gums by relieving the pressure placed on them by overnight teeth grinding. At My Family Dentistry, we can custom-fit a mouth guard so you can sleep comfortably. Custom devices offer better protection and a much more pleasant experience compared to your average over-the-counter product.
We also recommend that patients look into various forms of stress reduction. You may still need treatments and a night guard to treat your gum recession now, but in the long run a life with less stress can help prevent the problem from coming back. Whether it’s aerobic exercise, professional therapy sessions, or something else—it’s worth treating the stress factors.
Want to stop the daily grind? We can help! Make an appointment at My Family Dentistry for an examination and we will discuss your treatment options for receding gums.