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Gum Recession

What it is, how it’s caused, and what to do about it

What is gum recession?

Do your teeth seem to be growing longer? Don’t worry, it’s not just your imagination — it’s a dental health issue called gum recession and it affects millions of people. In fact 88% of people 65 and older have gum recession in at least one tooth. Gum recession is when the gums pull away (or recede) from the teeth, exposing the roots below. Left untreated, receding gums can lead to serious oral health issues including:

  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Teeth prone to decay
  • Pain
  • Loose or lost teeth

Thankfully, there are ways to combat and treat this issue. Our Escondido dentists have years of experience treating unhealthy gums and are here to help. Learn more below.

Are your gums receding? Try our self test

You should always work with a dentist to diagnose and create a treatment plan for gum recession. But if you’re wondering if this applies to you at all, start by asking yourself these questions:

  • Have you noticed that your teeth look longer than they used to?
  • Do you smoke or vape?
  • Do your teeth feel sensitive to hot or cold foods/drinks?
  • Do you grind your teeth?
  • Do your gums bleed when brushing or flossing?
  • Have you been diagnosed with gum disease?
  • Do any of your teeth feel a little loose?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are most likely at risk of gum recession or already suffering from the issue. Don’t wait to get a professional opinion. The sooner you address the problem, the better.

What causes gums to recede?

Periodontal disease is the leading cause of gum recession. Also called gum disease, periodontal disease is caused when bacteria in your mouth multiply to form plaque and tartar. Over time and without intervention, the bacteria in these substances will eat away at your gums and cause them to recede. Receding gums can also be the result of brushing with too much force, grinding and clenching your teeth, or wearing ill-fitting dentures.

Whatever the cause of your receding gums, one thing is certain — left untreated, you risk devastating effects, including tooth loss.

The 5 stages of gum recession

  1. Bleeding after brushing or flossing
  2. Sensitive teeth and pain along the gumline
  3. Teeth that appear longer than normal/shrinking gums
  4. Loose teeth
  5. Lost teeth

    Tips for preventing receding gums

    tlc escondido dental health issue bleeding gums
    The best way to prevent gum recession is to practice good oral hygiene and visit your dentist at least twice a year.

    • Brush your teeth a minimum of 2 times every day for at least 2 minutes
    • Floss once a day
    • Replace your toothbrush every 2-3 months
    • Avoid smoking, vaping, or chewing tobacco 
    • Eat a balanced diet
    • Follow any dentist-recommended treatment plans

    Treatments for gum recession in Escondido

    Before you can consider reshaping your gums, you must address the root cause. We offer a range of gum disease treatments to restore the health of your gums.

    Deep cleanings

    Also known as Scaling and Root Planing (SRP), a deep cleaning focuses on removing tartar buildup below your gum line, cleaning along the roots of your teeth. This treatment gives your gums and bone the chance to heal.

    Laser Assisted Periodontal Therapy (LAPT)

    This minimally-invasive treatment uses a laser to kill the disease-causing bacteria inside your gum tissue. LAPT is painless and strengthens your gum tissue, encouraging your body to heal.

    Laser bacterial reduction (LBR)

    This high-tech laser treatment reduces and eliminates bacteria in your mouth that eats away at your gums. Laser bacterial reduction is quick (10 minutes at most), comfortable, and will keep bacteria at bay for up to 6 months!

    Hear from our patients


    Karin R.

    My husband Gary recently had a new crown made at TLC Dental using a state of the art machine called Cerec. The entire procedure was completed in just a few hours start to finish and the crown is absolutely beautiful! One visit that was it! I can’t tell you how grateful he was to miss only a few hours of work to have this procedure done in 1 visit!  As my husband always tells me they are the best dentist we have ever had. So lucky to call them ours! Thank you TLC!


    Gerald E.

    Excellent customer service!
    From the front desk staff to the assistants!
    You’ll be pleased!

    tlc escondido new bleeding gums patients get help today

    Get help today

    It’s never too late to take control of your dental health. If you’re worried about receding gums, give us a call at (760) 741-5775 or contact us.

    Our office

    950 E. Pennsylvania Ave, Suite A
    Escondido, CA 92025
    Get directions

    We’re located just outside of downtown Escondido and offer free on-site parking.

    Call: (760) 741-5775

    7:30 am – 4:30 pm