When determining your candidacy for dental implants, it is common to focus on bone structure. Dental implants require a certain amount of healthy jawbone to hold them in place and be successful. However, your jawbone is not the only structure that supports your teeth and dental implants. Your gums are also an integral part of your smile foundation. So what does it mean if your gums are receding? Can you still get dental implants if you have gum recession?
What is Gum Recession?
Receding gums occur when the tissues that support your teeth shrink down or pull back, which exposes your tooth roots. This can not only make your teeth sensitive, but it can also make them more vulnerable to damage and loss. If you have already lost teeth and want dental implants, however, your receding gums can stand in the way.
Dental implants require sufficient jawbone as well as healthy gum tissue in order to offer long-term stability and success. If implants are placed in areas where the gums are receding or have low height, the base of the implant could be partially exposed. This could threaten the stability and strength of the dental implant restoration. In turn, your dental implant could become loose and any surrounding natural teeth can also become at risk for complications. Receding gums won’t necessarily disqualify you from dental implants forever. However, it may mean that you need to address and reverse the gum recession prior to getting your dental implants.
Causes of Receding Gums
Treating gum recession must be based on its cause. Gums can recede for a variety of reasons, including the following:
- Periodontal Disease
- Aggressive Tooth Brushing
- Poor Oral Hygiene
- Hormonal Changes
- Tobacco Products
- Grinding/Clenching Teeth
Treating Gum Recession Before Dental Implants
The good news is that gum recession can be fixed. For some patients, this may mean establishing better brushing habits and reversing signs of gum disease. If bruxism is the cause of your shrinking gums, it may be necessary to get a custom mouthguard, which will also prevent premature wear on your dental implants. For those with severe gum recession, a minor gum surgery can be performed. This involves using a gum graft to better cover the teeth roots and protect the dental implant. Gum grafting as well as bone grafting are done prior to your dental implant surgery. Once healing is complete, you can proceed with implant dentistry.
To learn more about getting dental implants with receding gums, please contact one of Marietta’s finest implant dentists. Dr. Wayne Suway carries an exemplary success rate when rebuilding smiles with dental implants!