What is Gum Graft Surgery?
A receding gumline does not only change the way your smile looks, it also increases your risk of tooth damage and decay. When your gumline migrates away from its ideal placement, it exposes the roots of the teeth and the teeth look longer. Gum (gingival) recession can arise from gum (periodontal) disease, tooth misalignment, teeth grinding or clenching (bruxism), and other oral concerns. Our dentist may suggest you undergo a gum grafting procedure to treat gum recession and restore you to optimal oral health. Gum grafting, or gingival recession treatment, takes tissue from other areas of your mouth or another source and uses it to replenish lost gums, returning your gums to their proper level. This procedure protects the roots of the teeth and can make you look and feel more confident. If you have experienced gum recession, call Made Ya Smile Spring Cypress today to set up a gum grafting consultation at our Houston, TX practice and take the next step in returning health to your smile.
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Do I Need Gum Graft Surgery?
Most often, gum recession is caused by gum disease, but the condition may arise due to genetics, chronic teeth clenching or grinding, misalignment teeth, oral piercings, and over-aggressive home care techniques. This periodontal concern can alter the appearance of your smile, causing tooth discoloration near the gumline and teeth that may now appear longer in length. Sensitivity when brushing and flossing your teeth or consuming hot and cold food and drinks may also become noticeable when you have gum recession. A consultation with our Houston, TX practice can help you decide if a gum grafting procedure is the right choice to return your gums and smile to health and protect your tooth roots from cavities or other decay.
How is Gum Graft Surgery Performed?
Gum grafting can revitalize and raise or lower the gumline as needed to give your gums a better, more protective position on the teeth. This procedure adds healthy gum tissue to areas of recession using gum tissue samples taken from your own mouth or other healthy sources to effectively cover the exposed roots and restore your gumline to a more attractive placement. Gingival recession treatments use a local anesthetic, and sedation dentistry services for improved patient comfort during treatment are also available if desired.
Several different types of gum grafting procedures may be used to return your gumline to a healthy location. We will recommend the approach that most optimally meets your unique oral health needs.
• Connective Tissue Graft: The most commonly used graft, these grafts use tissue that is taken from the roof of your mouth, right beneath the top layer of skin.
• Free Gingival Graft: Healthy tissue is used from the roof of your mouth, but is sourced directly from the top layer in this graft.
• Pedicle Gum Graft: When this type of graft is performed, tissue is borrowed from a neighboring tooth with excess gum tissue to spare. A flap is made in the tissue surrounding an adjacent tooth and the gum is stretched over the exposed root giving it proper coverage.
We prefer to use tissue from your own mouth for your gum grafting treatment, but when this is not possible, gum tissue samples from other biocompatible donors or synthetic materials may be chosen.
After your gum tissue samples are placed, they will be sutured to existing tissue to heal and integrate with your gums. Once healed, grafted gum tissues blend evenly and effectively raise or lower your gumline for improved health and appearance. Depending on the number of treatment sites you have and where they are in your mouth, it may take a few visits to complete your gum grafting treatment. We will instruct you on how best to care for your gums and teeth as you heal at the end of your first treatment.
How Long is the Recovery After Gum Surgery?
We recommend that you avoid eating until full feeling has returned to your mouth and that you relax and abstain from excessive physical activity for a few days after your gum grafting treatment. You can manage discomfort or gum tenderness in your treatment sites with cold compresses against the jaw and over-the-counter pain medication, and eating a diet of soft foods can also support your recovery. A medicated mouth rinse may also be prescribed to control potential bacterial accumulation during this time. As you heal, the new gum tissues will start to join and blend into the existing gumline. We strongly encourage you to follow the brushing, flossing, and other home care details we go over with you to make sure your new tissues heal fully and give you the best results possible for your smile. A follow-up visit will be scheduled a few weeks after your treatment at which time we will check in on your recovery and evaluate the healing progress of your new gumline.
Does Insurance Cover Gum Surgery?
Some coverage for gum grafting procedures may be available through your dental insurance, and our business team will find out if this is a covered benefit under your plan. Made Ya Smile Spring Cypress is a provider for most PPO plans and will be glad to file your dental insurance claim for you. If you have out-of-pocket costs, we talk to you about convenient payment options and financing through low-interest CareCredit® plans to make sure you can get the care you need for a comfortable and healthy smile.
Treatment for Gum Recession
Gum recession can be a serious problem that is more than just a cosmetic concern. Tooth sensitivity or longer-looking teeth may benefit from a gum grafting procedure, which can keep gum recession from threatening your oral health. Exposed tooth roots increase your risk of tooth damage and can alter the look and health of your smile. Schedule a visit with our dentist at Made Ya Smile Spring Cypress at our Houston, TX practice to find out if a gum grafting procedure may be the right solution to revitalize your gumline and give you a confident, healthy grin.