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Will a Gum Veneer Help Your Receding Gums?

If you have receding gums, you probably have questions about how they will change the appearance of your smile, if there's a way to grow back the gum (or gingiva) that you've lost, and the potential reasons for their recession. Unfortunately, there's no way for gums to grow back, but there are some ways to improve your smile after gum recession. The most minimally invasive option is a gum (or gingiva) veneer.

Just as porcelain veneers can help improve the look of your teeth, a gum veneer can help improve the look of your receding gums. Gum veneers are not as well known as veneers for your teeth, so we're here to tell you more about gum recession, the types of gingival veneers that are available to you, how best to care for them, and how they compare to other gum recession treatment options.

Why Do Gums Recede?

In a healthy mouth, your teeth are comfortably and securely nestled into your gums. Gum tissue provides a layer of support for the roots of your teeth, protecting them from decay and other issues. If your gums recede, they'll begin to pull away from your teeth, leaving your teeth more exposed to potential issues such as tooth loss.

Unfortunately, many people are at risk for gum recession for several reasons, including genetics, hormonal changes, diabetes, smoking, abrasive toothbrushing, and a lack of professional dental care access. The most common cause is gum disease, which results from a less than stellar oral care routine. Even though gum recession is irreversible, the field of dentistry, specifically periodontics, have made advancements that aim to replace lost gum tissue. Gum veneers are a great nonsurgical option compared to the rest of the treatments, which are surgical.

Types of Gum Veneers

 

Removable Veneers

Think of gingival veneers as a set of dentures for your gums rather than your teeth. Some gum veneers made from acrylic, composite resin, or porcelain material are removable. You should remove them each night while you sleep, and they require daily cleaning, just like dentures. A report published in the Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research (JCDR) notes that a recipient of gum veneers should wash their veneer after every meal and store it in water at night to prevent it from warping.

Fixed Veneers

Ceramic material makes up fixed gingival veneers, which fit permanently into your mouth. As a study published in Contemporary Clinical Dentistry notes, fixed veneers are less common than removable veneers. These veneers can be a little more challenging to clean because of their permanency.

The process of getting gingival veneers is similar to the process of getting a crown or replacement tooth. Usually, your dental professional will take an impression of the area the veneer will cover. They will create an initial veneer and apply it to your mouth to make sure it fits. And don't worry about a new, bright-looking appliance being noticeable in your mouth! Your dental professional will also tint it to fit in seamlessly with your smile.

Caring for a Gum Veneer

If you and your dental professional decide that a gum veneer is the right option for treating your receding gums, they will also give you specific instructions for caring for your veneer. They will likely instruct you to clean your veneer after eating or at least once a day, as noted above. If your veneer is removable, your dental professional will give you directions to remove and store the veneer properly when it isn't in your mouth. They will also show you how to place the veneer in your mouth so that it looks good and fits comfortably.

After any dental procedure or addition of a new dental appliance into your mouth, seeing your dental professional for regular checkups and cleanings is essential. It's the same after getting a gingival veneer. Doing this will help to reduce the risk of developing cavities or gum disease. And as always, keeping up with your top-notch oral care routine is imperative for the health of your whole smile, not just the area around your gum veneer. You should brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, clean between your teeth once a day with floss, a water flosser, or another interdental tool, and complete your routine with a rinse of mouthrinse to wash away any remaining bacteria.

Other Options for Treating Gum Recession

Veneers for receding gums can be an excellent option for improving your smile. Another treatment option is a gum graft, which replaces the missing gum tissue with material taken from another area, such as the palate or upper mouth. Other surgical options include contouring and regeneration. Your dental professional will be able to tell you which treatment option is best for you, based on the severity of your gum recession, cost of treatment, and other factors. The JCDR article notes that gum veneers can be an excellent option for those who would like more time to consider which surgery is right for them. It's also a good option for people whose recession is so severe that surgery may not give them the esthetic coverage they desire.

If you're worried about receding gums, consult a periodontist or your general dental professional to understand your treatment options. They will help you determine what you can do to correct the issue and restore your confidence in your smile! A gum veneer is a minimally invasive option that can be contoured to your smile and not affect the surrounding area of your mouth. But regardless of the treatment option you choose, it's imperative to continue a rigorous oral care routine, not only because of the gum recession that has already occurred but to protect your remaining gums and teeth from decay and disease.

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This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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