We have experts in gum graft at Fairbanks Periodontal Associates, and they will help you put an end to gingival recession, also described as receding gum. The gum shields the root of your tooth, but when the gum recedes, the root is exposed, and your tooth is prone to infections and other complications. Also, your smile loses its usual appeal.
If you visit our office with gum recession, our dentist may advise you to observe specific dental hygiene such as dental flossing and the use of a mouth rinse to prevent plaque and eventual tartar. We may also perform specific dental procedures to reshape your gum. Unfortunately, some form of gingival recession can only be corrected through a surgical intervention known as gum grafting. Our dental specialist may also refer to the procedure as periodontal plastic surgery.
Why Your Gum May Recede and Require Gum Grafting
The gum is made of soft tissues that may be easily injured. This is why our periodontist may tell you that consistent, aggressive brushing is not good for your gum. We may also mention the risk in the use of braces and bacterial buildup. Gum tissue that is thinner than usual will also predispose you to gingival recession.
Gum recession may likewise result from health conditions indirectly related to oral health. Our experts may ask if you have a history of diabetes or smoking. Studies have also confirmed genetic susceptibility to periodontal diseases. Do not be surprised, therefore, if our dentist asks you about cases of gum recession in your family.
What We Do During A Gum Grafting Procedure
Gum grafting involves harvesting tissue from the palate and grafting it on the affected areas of the gum. Once our dentist has concluded that you require periodontal plastic surgery, we will schedule you for the procedure.
The first thing our specialist will do during the surgery is to administer local anesthesia to the areas of the palate where the tissue will be harvested and those that need grafting. Consequently, the harvesting will be done, and the tissue sutured onto the areas with gum recession. If you have thick gum tissue around the recession area, our periodontist may choose to create a flap of gum tissue next to the recession and use it to cover the area with gingival recession. This option is highly successful since it does not involve complete detachment of the skin from blood flow.
The procedure concludes with an antibacterial mouth wash to protect the wounded gum from infection. The entire procedure may take between an hour and a half and two hours.
In some cases, our specialist may advise you to consider AlloDerm treatment. This means that we will not be able to use your skin for gum grafting because your gum tissue is extra thin or your mouth wall is not healthy enough for skin harvesting. You, therefore, need skin from a donor. Donated skin tissue is usually processed to remove the epidermis and other cells that may cause rejection by your gum. Schedule an appointment with us at Fairbanks Periodontal Associates at (907) 455-7100 for information on gum grafting.