Your gums are designed to cover the roots of your teeth to protect them. Gums do so by creating a seal against the surface of the tooth to prevent the intrusion of food and bacteria. Food and bacteria can cause plaque and tartar buildup, and without intervention, may result in gum disease and tooth decay.
Unfortunately, some people suffer from an inadequate amount of gum tissue, while others experience gum recession due to age, illness, or other factors. If your gum tissue is receding, it can become unsightly because teeth can appear too long. Receding gums can also expose roots, leading to discomfort and compromise your oral health.
What can you do to address gum recession? You can turn to the experienced doctors at Fioritto Family Dental! Our team will assess your condition and recommend treatment options such as a gum grafting procedure. What is this procedure and how can it help you?
What is Gum Grafting?
Gum grafting involves the ‘transplantation’ of tissue from one area of the mouth to another area of the mouth where gum tissue has thinned or receded. This procedure covers exposed tooth roots and restores a healthy gum line. Currently, we offer three types of gum grafting procedures: connective tissue grafts, free gingival grafts, and pedicle grafts.
Connective tissue grafting, the most common of the three, involves opening a flap of skin in the roof of the mouth to remove connective tissue. When this is completed, the flap is closed and the tissue is repositioned into areas where gum is recessed and augments the gum line.
Free gingival grafts are similar to connective tissue grafts except that no flap is cut into the roof of the mouth. Instead, tissue is taken directly from the palate and stitched to the gums. For patients that suffer from thin gum tissue, in addition to recession, this is the preferred method to add bulk to the gums.
Finally, there is a pedicle graft, which involves the use of gum tissue near the area of recession. The tissue is cut, but not removed, creating a small flap that can be pulled and positioned over the adjacent, exposed root and then stitched into place. This procedure requires that the patient has excess tissue near the area of recession.
What to Expect with a Gum Graft
Results and recovery may depend on the type of gum graft procedure we perform, but generally speaking, you can expect to eat a diet of soft foods and avoid brushing and flossing the affected area for several weeks following the procedure. Your mouth should heal within a few weeks, leaving you with healthy gum tissue and an attractive gum line that covers previously exposed roots.
For help with your gum recession, contact our friendly staff at Fioritto Family Dental today at 440-951-5511. Our doctors will be happy to discuss treatment options with you.