What is Gum Recession?

At our NDG dental clinic, we provide top-quality comprehensive dental care and education that can help you understand the causes of gum recession and how to treat it.

What is Gum Recession?

Gum recession occurs when the tissue surrounding your teeth pulls away, exposing more of your tooth. If left untreated, recession can cause deep pockets to form between teeth, trapping food particles and providing a breeding ground for harmful bacteria.

What Causes Gum Recession?

Gum recession naturally happens to many people as they age, and can be caused by a number of conditions, including:

Poor Oral Health

Failing to practice a proper oral hygiene routine that includes twice-daily brushing, daily flossing and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash puts you at higher risk of developing gum recession.  The plaque on your teeth turns into a hard substance called tartar, which builds up between teeth, causing gum recession.  Visiting your Westmount dental clinic for regular checkups and professional cleanings is also essential to keeping your mouth in good shape and halting gum recession before it starts.

Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that affects the supporting tissues and bone surrounding your teeth. Gum disease may not only lead to gum recession, it can cause teeth to become loose or even fall out. Scientific studies have shown an association between gum disease and other conditions such as stroke, diabetes and heart disease. If you are experiencing red, swollen, tender or bleeding gums, it’s important to see your Westmount dentist for treatment soon as possible.


Unfortunately, some people naturally have thin or weak gum tissue that makes them more prone to gum recession. If you are predisposed to gum recession or periodontal disease, it’s vital to visit your dentist regularly to keep an eye on its progression.

Aggressive Brushing

Brushing your teeth too hard can damage gum tissue and force it away from teeth. Make sure to brush firmly but gently, using a soft toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste.

Teeth Grinding and Clenching

Many people grind or clench their teeth, which, in addition to gum recession, can cause worn, broken or sensitive teeth. If you grind or clench your teeth, the experienced team at our NDG dental clinic can create a customized mouth guard to protect your teeth.