If you’re like a lot of people, you probably pay extra special attention to how your teeth look, but never think about your gums. Unfortunately though, neglecting that part of your mouth can lead to big problems, like receding gums — and that can affect your overall health. This is why we examine gums at every dental cleaning appointment.
What Are Gum Measurements?
During every dental cleaning, our hygienists examine your gums using a calibrated instrument to measure the pocket between the gum and the tooth (or root). We then take measurements of the pocket depth to get a feel for the health of the gum tissue. Healthy gum tissue will usually yield numbers of less than 4 mm. Higher numbers indicate that the tissue is inflamed and some dental treatment may be necessary.
Typically, 1 – 3 mm is healthy, 4 is a warning and anything over 5 is a call to action to prevent disease.
When a 5 or 6 mm pocket is recorded, a deep cleaning may be recommended. In rare instances when numbers are higher, gum surgery may be required.
Why You Should Be Concerned About Receding Gums
Gums recede and become inflamed or infected due to a buildup of bacteria. All food and drink pose a threat to your gums IF their particles are not removed properly. Toothbrushes and floss are critical for sweeping out this type of buildup.
Gum disease and tooth decay account for about 90% of tooth loss. The good news is that it is largely preventable. The bad news? Not many people like to brush and floss their teeth.
Dental work can be expensive and take time away from work and other activities. This is why we continue to stress preventative measures such as brushing, flossing and routine dental visits, in hopes of avoiding costly and time consuming procedures.
Our practice offers expert, pain-free services in general dentistry, cosmetic and restorative dentistry.
Need an appointment? Give us a call: 626-792-0448