Gum recession occurs when surrounding tissues of teeth begins to regress from a tooth, causing exposure of the root of the tooth. This common oral health condition can lead to damaged bone tissue. When left untreated, patients will experience extreme tooth sensitivity, and the aesthetics of a smile will be compromised as well. In order to repair damage and to prevent further complications, gum grafts may be necessary.
There are three types of gum grafts that are performed by our periodontist. The procedure performed will be based upon the needs of your condition. The gum grafts procedures include:
- Connective tissue grafts: This is the most commonly used gum grafting method which helps eliminate the exposure of the root of the tooth. Gum tissue will be harvested from your palate and during this procedure the subepithelial connective tissue will be intricately separated from the remaining dermis. This harvested subepithelial connective tissue will then be placed onto the compromised gum site in order to help restore deteriorated gum tissue.
- Free gingival grafts: These grafting methods also utilize harvested tissue from the roof of the mouth, however, separation of the dermis will not be necessary in this particular procedure. Tissue removed is then directly attached to the gum tissue in question.
- Pedicle grafts: This procedure does not require harvesting of gum tissue from the palate, but rather from the area near the tooth that is being restored. Gum tissue will be carefully incised and teased towards the exposed tooth root.
Gum grafts can also be conducted with donated tissue. This eliminates the need to harvest gum tissue from the oral cavity. Tissue stimulating proteins may also be used in order to encourage the body’s natural ability to redevelop bone and gum tissue.