Receding gums can be a sign of more serious dental health issues. It’s also one of the more common dental problems and can easily be avoided with proper oral care. Fortunately, there are natural ways to prevent the gum line from receding while also treating the underlying issues that may cause delicate gum tissue to deteriorate. Discover the best natural remedies for receding gums and learn more about what causes this condition and how you can maintain optimal oral health.
What Causes Receding Gums?
Gum recession is a condition where the gum line gradually wears down, revealing more of the roots of the teeth. It’s typically caused by inflammation of the gums caused by various underlying oral health issues. The condition typically happens slowly over a long period of time so most people don’t realize they have a problem until it becomes more severe.
As the gum line recedes, pockets develop between the teeth and the gums, creating a cavity that can collect plaque buildup and bacteria that can make the condition worse. If left untreated, gum recession can lead to serious dental health problems including jaw bone loss, infection, tooth decay, and tooth loss.
There are a host of factors that can cause gum recession ranging from gum disease known as periodontitis to brushing too aggressively. Genes can also play a role in increasing the risk of gum disease and dental health disorders while hormonal changes may also make gums more vulnerable to recession. Improper dental care also increases the risk of gum recession as tartar builds up and causes gum disease.
To avoid gum recession, it’s important to practice proper dental hygiene. This includes regular brushing and flossing and getting professional dental cleanings every six months. If you find that your gums are receding, you should consult a dentist as soon as possible to learn about your treatment options.
In severe cases, you may need a surgical procedure such as a gum graft while minor problems can be addressed using home remedies or by changing your hygiene habits. Read on to discover the best natural remedies for receding gums.
The Best Natural Remedies For Receding Gums
1. Oil Pulling
Oil pulling is an Ayurvedic practice that typically uses coconut oil or sesame oil as a mouthwash to help remove bacteria and promote healthy teeth. A small study published in the Indian Journal of Dental research examined the effects of oil pulling on plaque induced gingivitis in 20 adolescent boys. Researchers found a significant reduction in gingival scores and a decrease in the presence of bacteria after oil pulling (1).
To use this method, place a teaspoon of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it around for 10 minutes. The swishing helps to get the oil in between teeth and around the gums. The coconut oil also boasts antibacterial properties that may help to eliminate bad breath and prevent bacteria that cause gingivitis. After swishing, spit the coconut oil into the sink and rinse your mouth with warm water. Brush your teeth using a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste to remove any leftover residue.
2. Salt Water Rinse
Rinsing with salt water is a popular technique for maintaining overall gum health. Salt boasts natural anti-inflammatory properties that can help to decrease gum inflammation and slow the recession of the gum line. Studies show that rinsing with salt water can increase the expression of type I collagen and fibronectin along with other compounds that are essential to the health of gum tissue (2).
Mix one teaspoon of salt into an eight-ounce cup of warm water. Use the salt water rinse as a mouthwash and gently swish the mixture around for 30 seconds to one minute. Spit the water into the sink and rinse as needed.
3. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is a powerful healing agent and one of the most popular ways to treat a sunburn. Research published in the Journal of Indian Society of periodontology found that aloe vera plays a key role in healing periodontal disease. Researchers found that applying aloe vera gel to periodontal pockets resulted in faster gum healing. Researchers profound that ingredients including vitamin C helped to stimulate fibroblast activity and collagen proliferation (3).
4. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus oil contains antifungal and antibacterial properties that may help to prevent gum recession and support gum regeneration. A study published in the Journal of Periodontology found that chewing eucalyptus gum helped to significantly reduce plaque accumulation, bleeding gums, and the periodontal probing depth in patients with gingivitis, but not severe gum recession pockets (4).
Try chewing gum that contains eucalyptus or peppermint oil at the first signs of gum problems. Another great alternative is to apply a small, diluted amount of essential oils such as tea tree oil directly to the affected gum area. While chewing gum isn’t a replacement for regular tooth brushing and oral hygiene, it may help to protect teeth and gums from recession and bacteria that cause health problems.
5. Green Tea
Drinking a few cups of green tea every day may help to prevent gum recession by protecting the soft tissue and bone structures in your mouth. Studies show that green tea is inversely correlated with probing depth. In fact, with each cup of green tea per day, researchers saw a 0.023mm decrease in the mean probing depth (5).
6. Turmeric Gel
Turmeric contains a powerful ingredient known as curcumin, which is widely renowned for its anti-inflammatory properties. Small studies show that turmeric gel may help to prevent gingivitis that causes receding gum lines to begin with (6).
7. Clove Oil
Clove oil is a popular alternative medicine choice for a range of dental health problems. Medical research shows that clove oil may help to decrease pain associated with toothache, dental procedures, and gum recession (7). The oil works by using antiseptic properties to fight bacteria that cause gingivitis and plaque buildup. Clove also contains eugenol, an ingredient that is a natural anesthetic and has been shown to be as effective in managing pain as benzocaine (8).
8. Proper Dental Hygiene
Poor dental hygiene is the main underlying cause behind receding gums. Regular brushing and flossing is the best way to prevent gums from receding and to stop further recession. Use a soft-bristled brush rather than a hard brush, which can cause further gum recession. Brush your teeth gently for two minutes twice per day focusing on cleaning the surface of the teeth as well as the gum line.
Flossing should be done at least once per day to prevent plaque buildup between teeth. You can use regular floss or a flossing tooth that makes it easier to reach tight spaces in the back of your mouth.
Support Oral Health With Natural Remedies
One of the most common dental health problems is receding gums. Fight periodontitis with regular brushing and flossing and checkups at your dentist’s office. If you suffer from receding gums, don’t feel bad. You may be able to use natural remedies to help treat the receding gums at home if the progression is not too severe. Try using essential oils, drinking green tea, or using a salt water rinse to keep inflammation down and support gum regeneration. In severe cases, you may need to have an oral procedure such as a gum graft to prevent further deterioration of the gum line.