For some people, their smile is one of their best features. Whether you have small or large teeth, an imperfect smile can make you self-conscious about your appearance. Fortunately, some dentists specialize in cosmetic dentistry to help with these imperfections and give you the confidence boost you’re looking for.
Having a tooth root exposed may become an insecurity to some and can cause anxiety to others. Once your tooth root is exposed, it tends to0 feel very shaky, and you may feel like it will fall off anytime. This is because your gums have pulled away from your teeth, causing the tooth to become loose.
Tooth root exposure also appears as if your roots are exposed due to gingival recession (also known as receding gums). This condition happens when the tissues covering your teeth's roots recede. This exposes the roots, leaving them more prone to decay and sensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks.
If you have this condition, it’s essential to visit a dentist so they can check for any cavities or periodontal disease that may be present because of this condition.
Teeth Roots Exposed: What's Going On?
While an exposed root is not technically an infection, it is a risk factor for developing periodontal disease, or a localized infection around the root of the tooth, because it provides an entry point for bacteria to get inside the root of the tooth and cause damage.
An exposed root can also signal the presence of advanced gum disease, which puts you at a higher risk for tooth loss. An exposed tooth root is usually caused by the gum tissue around the tooth breaking down. This is often a sign of not caring for your mouth well enough.
When the gums detach from the teeth, they leave the root exposed, which can make teeth look longer and make it more challenging to clean your teeth, as the root often has plaque and food debris built up between it and the surrounding teeth.
Recognizing When A Root Is Exposed
This condition is usually diagnosed during a routine dental exam. If your doctor sees any signs of an exposed root, they may recommend a dental x-ray to look closely at the damage. This helps doctors make a more accurate prognosis and diagnose any associated conditions.
An exposed root can be hard to detect at first. That’s because it has the same color as the surrounding gums. If it’s accompanied by bleeding when you brush your teeth or floss, that’s a sign there’s a problem.
Having sensitive and tender gums also indicates a problem with your tooth. This is often accompanied by inflammation and bleeding when brushing the teeth.
Typical Symptoms Of An Exposed Tooth Root
As mentioned above, if you have an exposed root, you will likely experience some symptoms. Those may include:
- Sharp or dull pain in your teeth. This is caused by pressure from saliva building up around the root.
- Sensitivity to hot or cold foods or drinks. If a tooth root is exposed, it’s more likely to be sensitive to these changes in temperature.
- When you brush or floss your teeth or clean an exposed root, you risk irritating the gums and causing bleeding.
- Root decay. If the gum tissue around the root is receding, it’s more challenging to clean your teeth. This allows plaque to build up and can lead to root decay.
Be On The Look Out For These Causes (and How to Avoid Them)!
If you have an exposed root, the first step to treating it is identifying the cause of the condition. Here are some of the most common causes of an exposed tooth root.
Lousy brushing habits is one of the top causes of exposed roots. If you’re not brushing your teeth with the recommended two minutes brushing time (especially skimping on the brushing at the front of your teeth), you’re likely missing areas and letting plaque build-up.
High or Low Saliva Flow
Saliva helps break down bacteria and food particles that make their way toward your teeth. You will likely have more plaque buildup if you have low saliva flow.
Excessive Tongue Pressure
The tongue is connected to the teeth via the gums, so putting too much pressure on your tongue can cause the gums to recede and expose the roots.
If your family has a history of gum disease, you’re more likely to experience receding gums which can later lead to exposed tooth roots.
Options For Fixing Your Exposed Tooth Root
If you have an exposed root, it’s essential to visit the dentist as soon as possible so they can identify the source of the problem and determine if there are any other issues. Once the dentist knows what’s going on, they can suggest the best treatment option for your case. There are a few standard treatment options for an exposed root, including:
Minor Gum Surgery with Flaps
This surgical procedure involves removing a part of the gums to expose the root and then using sutures to reattach the gums.
In some cases, the dentist may entirely recommend the tooth's removal. This is usually done to prevent the spread of infection so the dentist can clean up the infection and replace the tooth.
Implants or Bridges
If your tooth is badly damaged and cannot be saved anymore, the dentist may suggest a bridge or implant, a dental procedure involving inserting an artificial tooth into the space where your tooth used to be.
Suggestions For An Exposed Root Treatment
Once you have been diagnosed with gingival recession, the first step to treating it is making sure you clean your teeth regularly and avoid the habits that may have caused the condition in the first place. This includes using a soft toothbrush, using the correct technique for brushing your teeth, and avoiding the following foods:
Citrus fruits, such as oranges and lemons, are high in acid and can damage tooth enamel.
Foods that are Sticky or Sweet
Sticky or sweet foods, such as caramel, can get stuck in your teeth and cause damage and plaque buildup.
While these foods may be delicious, they also cause bad breath and can damage your teeth if not cleaned immediately.
When Roots Are Exposed Too Far For A Quick Fix
If the roots are exposed too far for a quick fix, your dentist may recommend a root canal treatment. This is a procedure where the dentist removes the infected tissue around the tooth's root.
Then, they disinfect the empty tooth and fill it with a sterile material that keeps bacteria from growing inside the tooth and causing tooth decay without a protective covering of enamel. You may require a root canal treatment if you have advanced gum disease that is close to or has spread to the roots of your teeth.
Root-canal treatments are common and usually very successful, but they can cause moderate to severe pain. You can expect to experience pain and swelling in your gums and sensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks for several weeks after the procedure.
An Exposed Tooth Root Gets You To The Dentist; Now It's Your Turn to Keep Your Teeth Healthy
If you have an exposed root, it’s more important than ever to ensure you’re practicing good oral hygiene, which includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing at least once a day, and visiting the dentist regularly for checkups.
If you have an exposed root, it’s also essential to use a special toothpaste that contains fluoride. Also, it's important to keep your oral health in good shape by limiting the number of sugary foods you eat and going to the dentist as soon as you notice a problem.
Contact Dyme Dental To Learn More About Exposed Tooth Roots
Dental treatment has advanced dramatically during the past few decades. When performed by experts, different dental procedures are effective, brief, and almost painless.
At Dyme Dental, we will discuss each operation in detail. Whether you need a simple cleaning to get rid of tartar or something more complicated, like gum root planing or a root canal, our friendly staff and trained specialists can help.
We can assist you in acquiring or keeping healthy teeth. Call us immediately to schedule an appointment!