Gum Tissue Grafting: Procedure, Types & Recovery

Gum Tissue Grafting: Procedure, Types & Recovery

November 1, 2021

What is Gum Grafting?

Gingival grafting is a dental procedure performed by a gum specialist known as a periodontist to correct gum recession. Gum recession is the process whereby the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls away from a tooth and exposes the tooth’s roots.

Our gums recede gradually due to issues such as brushing too aggressively, extremely thin gum tissues, orthodontic treatment, and gingivitis or gum disease. A gum graft treats the receding gums and restores them to a healthy state.

Our dentist near you works to reverse the effects of the recession and restore the receded gums to maintain a protective seal around your teeth. This procedure is vital since untreated receding gums expose the roots of the teeth and cause tooth decay, teeth loss, teeth sensitivity, and an unattractive smile.

Types of Gum Grafting

There are various gum grafting procedures based on individual periodontal needs. The type of gum graft technique recommended by our dentist in Fairfax depends on:

  • The degree of gum recession
  • If the recession has taken place only between the teeth or on the front surface of the teeth too
  • How much the cheek can pull on the grafted site during everyday activities
  • Your oral health history

The types of gingival grafting procedures performed by our dentist in Fairfax, VA, include:

Free Gingival Graft

A small piece of tissue is taken directly from the roof of your mouth and stitched to the area that requires more tissue. A free gingival graft is recommended for patients with extremely thin gums who need more tissue to prevent further gum recession.

Connective Tissue Graft

This method requires your dentist to open a small flap in the roof of your mouth and remove a piece of sub-epithelial connective tissue underneath. This flap is sutured back to its original position, and the tissue is stitched on the site of gum recession.

Pedicle or Lateral Graft

The pedicle graft technique is different from the techniques above since the tissue required for treating the receded gums does not come from the roof of the mouth. It is instead grafted from the gum around or near the area that requires treatment. This tissue is cut away partially, and one side remains attached to the gums. Our dentist in Fairfax pulls the tissue over or down until it covers the exposed tooth roots then sews it in place.

Alternative Grafts

This method is utilized when the patient has inadequate healthy tissue in the mouth for a gum graft procedure. Our dentist will use grafts from a tissue bank of a cadaver or porcine to restore the receded gums. An alternative graft procedure is carried out when much of the patient’s gums have receded or if the gum area to be covered is large.

What to Expect During Gum Grafting Procedure?

The procedure requires minimal preparation since there are no medications required or dietary restrictions. A consultation with our dentist in Fairfax, VA, will determine the severity of your gum recession and the type of gum grafting technique suitable for you.

Before the procedure, your dental team will administer either local or general anesthesia to numb the treatment area and help ease anxiety. It is recommended to arrange for transport since the anesthesia may take some time to wear off completely.

After the grafting has taken place, you will rinse your mouth using an antibacterial mouthwash to prevent an infection. Next, our dentist will prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to promote faster healing.

Recovery after a Gum Tissue Graft Procedure

After a successful procedure at Drummond Dental Care, your gums will need a few weeks for them to heal and the swelling to minimize. Therefore, special care during this period is important. This helps the gum adapt to the site and restore its appearance.

Here are some instructions to help you heal fully without complications:

  • Take the prescribed anti-inflammatory and pain medication as instructed by your dentist to minimize the risk of infection and pain
  • Do not brush or floss on or near the operated area until the gum heals
  • Use the specially prescribed mouth rinse, which will help control plaque as the gums heal
  • Eat soft foods a week or two after the procedure. some of them are cottage cheese, eggs, yogurt, pasta, gelatin, and well-cooked vegetables
  • Do not carry out strenuous activities or exercises before your dentist allows you to
Are you looking for Gum Grafting in Fairfax, VA? Call or schedule an appointment with Drummond Dental Care for professional dental care treatments.
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