About 12% of all American adults deal with gum recession.
Even scarier than the statistics about gum recession is that most people with receding gums don’t even know it until it becomes a serious problem. Luckily, you can treat receding gums and maintain the health and aesthetics of your smile with gum grafting.
Gum grafting refers to a category of surgical periodontal procedures that aims to protect your smile from the damaging effects of gum recession. There are two main types of gum grafting surgery: free gingival graft and connective tissue graft.
Free Gingival Graft
This graft is designed to thicken thinning gums when there is no tooth root exposure. By thickening the gum tissue, your gums are more resistant to infection. Additionally, the free gingival graft helps to prevent further gum recession.
-Requires utilizing tissue from the roof of the mouth and attached to the treated area
-This option is popular for individuals who have thin gums
Connective Tissue Graft
This graft is designed to treat cases where tooth root has been exposed. The graft is used to cover the exposed tissue and help reestablish the proper gum contours within the mouth. The success of the connective tissue graft typically depends on the amount of bone loss in the area where the exposure has occurred.
-A flap of skin is taken from the roof of the patient’s mouth and stitched to exposed root tissue
-When the connective tissue is removed from the flap, the flap will be stitched and restored
Both free gingival grafting and connective tissue grafting serve the purpose of treating gum disease. However, the type of gum grafting that is used depends on each unique situation, the degree of gum disease, and specific needs.
Signs of Gum Recession
During the procedure, your dentist may provide you with anesthesia to alleviate the pain. As a result, you will need someone to take you to and from your appointment. We recommend taking any prescribed medication and antibiotics to relive soreness and bacteria.
Please avoid brushing and flossing the treated area to allow it time to heal. For approximately one week, you should eat soft foods such as ice cream and cheese in the days following your procedure. You will fully heal within a week of surgery and can return to basic activities soon after!