One of the more unsightly effects of gum disease is recession of the gum tissue. This process makes your teeth look longer, instantly aging your smile. It also can lead to tooth sensitivity, as shrinkage of the gums exposes the more sensitive root structure of the tooth. Additionally, when that root is exposed, the patient has a greater risk of developing painful cavities there.
Unfortunately, the gum tissue cannot repair the damage on its own, but gum grafting is an effective treatment to address both of these issues associated with gum disease. The intervention not only restores the smile’s appearance, it also adds a layer of protection to the root structure.
When performing a gum graft, the periodontist will insert donor tissue at the site of recession. That donor tissue can come from elsewhere in the patient’s mouth or from another human (such as Alloderm®) or animal (such as Mucograft®) donor source.
In some cases, the periodontist may add a product that enhances the results of a gum graft through cellular regeneration with Straumann®Emdogain™, which boosts the donor tissue source.
If an exposed root is not a concern, the need for a donor site within the patient’s mouth can be eliminated with an innovative cell-based therapy called Gintuit™, which is a thin sheet of cells and other materials that help to promote tissue regeneration and growth.
Your provider will take a detailed medical and dental history from you, take images such as x-rays and explore your desired outcomes to decide the most appropriate treatment plan in your case.
Regardless of the type of gum grafting you’ll undergo, the procedure is performed in our office, and patients usually can resume their normal routines within a matter of days, if not sooner. Your provider will give you more detailed information on what you can expect from the procedure and its effects afterward.
If you’ve noticed increased tooth sensitivity, schedule an appointment with one of our periodontal specialists to determine if gum disease may be an underlying cause.