Receding Gums Specialist

Houston Oral Healthcare Specialists

Lewis C. Cummings, DDS, MS

Periodontist located in Kingwood, TX

Untreated gingivitis can cause gum recession, which can lead to exposure of the roots of the teeth, pain, and tooth loss. Lewis C. Cummings, DDS, MS, of Kingwood, Texas, is highly skilled and experienced in the surgical and nonsurgical treatment of gum recession. When you restore the health of your gums, your risk for tooth loss and other complications decreases significantly. For a consultation, call or book an appointment online with Dr. Cummings.

Receding Gums Q & A

What are receding gums?

Gum recession, or gingival recession, is a condition where the gums wear away or pull back from the base of the teeth. The gums protect the roots of the teeth from infection and help to secure teeth in the jawbone. With receding gums, pockets form at the base of the tooth, providing a perfect environment for bacterial growth and infection.

Advanced gum recession can visibly expose the root of the tooth, causing the tooth to look long. Gum recession happens gradually, so you may not realize it is a problem until you have severe sensitivity, loose teeth, or oral infection.

What causes receding gums?

The primary cause of gum recession is periodontal disease, which begins at gingivitis. Gingivitis, or gum disease, is an inflammation of the gums most often caused by poor oral hygiene.

Other causes of receding gums may include:

  • Age
  • Smoking or tobacco use
  • Genetics or family history
  • Overly aggressive teeth brushing
  • Misaligned teeth
  • Hormonal changes
  • Teeth grinding
  • Oral piercings, which may irritate the gums
  • Poor nutrition

While you may not realize you have receding gums, Dr. Cummings monitors this aspect of your oral health with every visit. Regular dental visits can help identify gum recession early, when it may be reversible with appropriate treatment.

What’s the treatment for gum recession?

Dr. Cummings may treat gum recession using focused, deep cleaning in the affected area. Deep cleaning may include scaling and root planing, which is a method for removing the plaque and tartar causing your gums to recede. Dr. Cummings may also order antibiotics to treat the underlying infection.

If your gum recession is more severe, it may require gum graft surgery. Gum graft surgery uses grafted soft tissue to cover the exposed root of the tooth. Dr. Cummings can perform this for one tooth or multiple teeth.

Gum recession may not only pose an oral health risk, but may also make you self-conscious, because having longer teeth may make them look or feel older. Gum grafting can help to improve your smile, boost your confidence, and improve your oral health.  

For a consultation about how to treat your gum recession, call or book an appointment online with Lewis C. Cummings, DDS, MS, today.