When recession of the gingiva (gum tissue) occurs, the body loses a natural defense against both bacterial penetration and trama. When gum recession is a problem, gum reconstruction using grafting techniques is a highly effective option.
When there is only minor recession, some healthy gingiva often remains and protects the tooth, so that no treatment other than modifying home care practices is necessary. However, when recession reaches the mucosa (the cheek or lip lining), the first line of defense against bacterial penetration is lost.
In addition, gum recession often results in root sensitivity to hot and cold foods as well as an unsightly appearance to the gum and tooth. Also, gum recession, when significant, can predispose to worsening recession and expose the root surface, which is softer than enamel, leading to root decay and root gouging and possible tooth loss.