Gum Recession Treatment in Washington D.C. & Alexandria, VA

Gum Recession

Prevent Gum Recession by scheduling an appointment today!

When gum disease begins, the soft tissue around each tooth becomes infected and begins to pull away, or recede, from the tooth surface. This forms pockets between the tooth and the gum tissue. Bacteria can collect in these pockets, causing more infection, which enables the gum disease to progress quickly to more severe stages.

Common causes of gum recession include:

  • Periodontal Disease
  • Genetics
  • Tooth Brushing Methods
  • Oral Hygiene Routines
  • Hormonal Changes
  • Bruxism or Misaligned Teeth
  • Lifestyle Habits

Periodontal Disease

Periodontal or gum disease is the most common reason for progressive gum recession. When gingivitis is left untreated, gum recession is almost a surety. Once pockets are formed, they will not go away without specific treatment – the method of which will vary depending on the severity of the recession and the state of the gums and teeth.


Certain people are genetically pre-disposed to gum disease, meaning they are automatically at a higher risk of gum recession. If family members have gum disease and recession, it is likely that children and siblings will also be prone to receding gums.

Tooth Brushing Methods

Incorrect brushing habits, including brushing to hard or with a toothbrush composed of overly stiff bristles, can cause gums to receded out of irritation.

Oral Hygiene Routines

Failing to brush, floss, and see a dentist regularly leads to bacteria and plaque build-up, which can lead to gum disease.

Hormonal Changes

Fluctuating hormone levels such as those caused by pregnancy, certain forms of birth control, menopause, or hormone replacement therapy can cause gum issues.

Bruxism or Misaligned Teeth

Tooth clenching and grinding can cause stress to soft gum tissues and lead to receding gums. Misaligned teeth can also put strain on soft tissues and cause problems.

Lifestyle Choices

Tobacco use (including smoking and chewing) increases the risk of gum disease and receding gums. Tongue or lip piercings can also add to gum irritation and cause infection.

Preventing Gum Recession

Gum recession can often be prevented. Steps to minimize risk include:

  • Regular brushing and flossing as well as regular cleanings and exams
  • Adherence to a healthy diet
  • Avoidance of tobacco products
  • Use of an electric toothbrush
  • Seeking treatment for misaligned bite or bruxism

Regular dental maintenance, proper at-home oral hygiene, and careful monitoring of any changes in the mouth can help effect early diagnosis and gum disease treatment, preventing gum recession. If gum recession occurs, there are many specialized treatments available to restore health and comfort.

Gum recession is both preventable and treatable, especially when caught in the early stages. Contact us for an appointment at our Washington D.C. or Alexandria, VA offices.

Periodontists Dr. Justin Zalewsky, Dr. Michael Hoge, and the Precision Periodontics and Implant Dentistry team offer a range of periodontal treatment options to the Virginia, Maryland, and Washington D.C. area, including residents seeking a periodontist in Annandale, Arlington, Burke, Chevy Chase, Falls Church, Fairfax, and Springfield. Please contact us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Zalewsky or Dr. Hoge, or request your appointment online.