When gum (periodontal) disease has progressed to the advanced stages, you may develop gum recession. This causes a higher gumline and exposed tooth roots. At SmilesNY Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry, part of your periodontal disease treatment could include surgical gum grafting to revive your gumline. With several different graft options, board-certified periodontist Dr. Kevin Loshak will create your custom treatment plan to restore your receding gums. Contact our office in New York, NY to learn more about how gum grafting can mend your gums, protect your teeth, and improve the overall look of your smile.
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Usually, gums grafts are performed to repair gum recession caused by periodontal (gum) disease. Your gumline may be higher and your gums can pull away from your teeth. The exposed tooth roots may result in increased sensitivity. Other reasons that might cause or contribute to gum recession are brushing your teeth aggressively or with a poor technique, chronic teeth grinding (bruxism) or jaw clenching, and misaligned teeth. In some cases, oral piercings (lip or tongue) can irritate the gums and cause gum recession. In your consultation, Dr. Loshak will examine your gums and determine if you are a candidate for gum grafts.
What To Expect
There are various sorts of gum grafts that will be selected based on your specific condition. Connective-tissue grafts are the most common type used to correct root exposure. This involves making an incision in the roof of your mouth to create a small flap of skin. The connective tissue is removed from the flap and attached to your gums. A free gingival graft is similar except that more tissue is used from the roof of the mouth to increase particularly thin gums. The third procedure is a pedicle graft that takes excess gum tissue from one area to where you need coverage. At your consultation, Dr. Loshak will guide you to the best graft to suit your needs.
You can go home after the grafting procedure, but you need to rest for a few days. You'll also need to have a responsible adult drive you home if you were given oral or intravenous sedation. Dr. Loshak will go over your recovery instructions, including dietary restrictions and any medications you need to take. You may feel some pain or discomfort for a while after your operation, which might be reduced with cold compresses and over-the-counter pain medication. To avoid damaging the grafts, you should not brush or floss while your gums are healing. Dr. Loshak will recommend a rinse to keep your mouth clean. You may need to return for follow-up appointments so Dr. Loshak can monitor your healing and progress.
In case you have dental insurance, a member of our team will contact your provider and affirm your benefits. For out-of-pocket costs after insurance and for patients with no insurance, SmilesNY accepts many payment methods. During your consultation, a member of our team can go over your estimated costs. We can also tell you about low-interest financing to make your treatment easier to afford.
Gum Grafting FAQ
Does gum grafting hurt?
No, it doesn’t. Before the procedure begins, Dr. Loshak will numb the treatment area with a local anesthetic to keep you comfortable. If patients feel anything at all, they report a slight feeling of pressure. SmilesNY also offers sedation options to enhance your comfort. During the recovery process, the gum graft may feel a little sore, but any discomfort is usually easily controlled with over-the-counter pain relievers and following post-procedure care instructions.
Is gum grafting safe?
While any type of surgical procedure, no matter how small, carries some amount of risk, gum grafting is considered very safe and effective when performed by an experienced practitioner like Dr. Loshak. According to surveys, gum grafting has about a 90% success rate, with only about 2% failing.
How long does a gum grafting procedure take?
Each procedure is unique, but on average, a gum grafting procedure can take about 1 – 1.5 hours.
Gum Graft Surgery
Gum grafting surgery is a restorative dental procedure at SmilesNY used to repair your gums, improve your oral health, and make your smile more attractive. If your gums are receding due to advanced periodontal disease or other causes, schedule a consultation with Dr. Loshak at our office in New York, NY to learn more about the benefits of gum grafts.
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