Gum Recession

Gum Recession

Dental Advice

Not all gum recession is from gum disease.

It can be from abfraction and wear.  In the old days people were told that they were brushing too harshly if their gums were receding and their teeth were wearing around the gum line. The truth is excessive wear caused from flexing of the teeth causes the enamel to chip away or disintegrate gradually at the point of flexure.  This is called Abfraction.   Just imagine a painted cardboard that is bent and flexed at one point.  Eventually the paint will usually start to “flake off” of the card board.

When a tooth is chronically flexed due to abnormal habits like night time grinding, the enamel at the gum line disappears, and the gum, which used to be attached to the enamel, recedes.   The root surface that is exposed under the enamel tends to be very weak and is more vulnerable to further erosion.  That weakened surface can become a “hot spot” for future root cavities, because food falls in easily to this concavity, and the acidic nature from soft drinks can easily “melt away” more layers from this root surface.  Root cavities can affect all adults.  Root surfaces are 700% softer than enamel surfaces.  Root surfaces are more sensitive to hot and cold drinks.

Do you have any of these signs from your teeth:

1. Do you have sensitivity to cold or hot.  Is it particularly sensitive when you brush at the gums lines?

2. Is there a concavity or a ledge on the gum line of your teeth where you can catch with your finger nail?

3. Do you have receded gums- making the tooth look “long”?

4.  Do you believe that you inherently have “weak teeth” because you still get dental problems despite your efforts?


If you have any of the signs present on your teeth, then there is a high chance that it is from abfraction.  Abfraction can lead to further serious dental problems.  There are very simple ways to treat and prevent it from getting worse.   Call our Orlando dental office at 407-851-0784.  We will be happy to evaluate the options customized for you.

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