Nobody enjoys going to the dentist, but if you suffer from dental phobia, it can be a particularly harrowing ordeal. Between 9 and 20 percent of Americans suffer from dental phobia. It is a more serious condition than general anxiety. Although you are aware that your fear is irrational, you may still have difficulty controlling it. You may even feel you will do anything possible to avoid going to see a dentist and will only go if you are having a dental emergency. There are a number of reasons why you may suffer from dental phobia including fear of pain, fear of injections, fear of anesthetic, feeling vulnerable, or discomfort with the proximity of the dentist.
Why You Need to See a Dentist for Receding Gums
Even though you have a phobia of the dentist, if you suffer from receding gums, it is important to get dental treatment, otherwise you may end up losing your teeth. Gum recession is the process in which the edges of the gum tissue surrounding the teeth begin to erode, eventually exposing the roots of the teeth. As this takes place, pockets begin to form between the teeth and the gum line, making it easy for the build-up of bacteria. Left untreated, this condition can destroy the gums, ligaments and bone structure of the teeth.
There are a number of possible causes for receding gums:
- A genetic predisposition.
- Aggressive tooth brushing.
- Tobacco use.
- Hormonal changes.
- Teeth grinding.
Treatment for gum recession is much the same as for periodontal disease: scaling and root planning. Because there is a build-up of plaque and tartar around the gum line, this must be carefully removed by a dentist. Antibiotics are then applied to the gums to help them heal. Depending on how bad the gum recession is, scaling and root planning may be done in one or more visits, often treating one side of the mouth at a time.
If gum recession is particularly bad, your dentist may recommend pocket depth reduction surgery. This procedure involves folding back the gum tissue and removing bacteria from the pockets. The gum tissue is secured over the tooth’s root, minimizing the size of the pocket.
Preventing Receding Gums
The best way to prevent receding gums is to brush your teeth and floss at least twice each day, and visit your dentist at least twice a year. There are also some natural home remedies that you can use to prevent and heal receding gums.
Green tea: The health benefits of green tea are numerous. It is rich in antioxidants, which can help prevent the build-up of bacteria in your mouth. Drinking just one cup of green tea each day can significantly help.
Aloe Vera: Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory and cell repairing properties which can help heal receding gums. Aloe vera gel may be applied directly to the gums. You can also purchase aloe vera toothpaste or mouthwash.
Clove Oil: Clove is an antiseptic oil and can kill oral bacteria. One or two drops can be applied directly to the gums 1-3 times daily. You can also add clove oil to water to make a mouthwash.
If you suffer from dental anxiety and you haven’t been to a dentist in a long time you may be wondering, how can I find a dentist near me? Don’t worry, you can easily find a local orthodontist by searching online. Once you find one, make an appointment as soon as you can. Try not to get too uneasy it. If you need to have deep cleaning done, because of your receding gums, you may want to talk to your dentist about being sedated during the process. There are different levels of sedation used in this type of dentistry.
- Minimal sedation: You will be awake and aware of what is happening, but you will feel very relaxed.
- Moderate sedation: You will be very relaxed and your speech will be a little slurred. You may not be able to remember much of the treatment.
- Deep sedation: You will be very relaxed and sleepy, but you will be wakened easily.
- General anesthesia: You will be unconscious.
Dental sedation may be administered either orally, by inhalation or by means of IV. You will also receive a local anesthetic to numb the site where your dentist is working.
Receding gums pose a serious threat to the health of your teeth and your overall health. It is important that you visit an orthodontist before you lose your teeth. Call your dentist today and explain your dental phobia, he or she will be very understanding and will be able to make suggestions to help your visit as comfortable as possible.
This is a partnered Post. Author:
Mike Plambeck is a dental marketing professional who writes about the world of online dental marketing as well as educational dental health topics. He lives in Lincoln, NE and raises 2 kids, Noah and Dani, along with his wife Marissa.