Gum grafting is a simple procedure that involves removing tissue from a healthy area of your gums or the roof of your mouth and attaching it to the part of the gums that has been infected or damaged. Gum grafts are usually used to treat gum disease and gum recession.
Gum disease is very common. It is caused by poor oral hygiene that leads to plaque buildup, and if left untreated, gum disease can have serious consequences for your oral and overall health. Gum grafts can be used to treat gum disease by repairing the areas of gum tissue that have become infected or inflamed.
Gum grafts are also used to treat gums that have receded. Gum recession is gradual, and can be caused by poor oral hygiene, gum disease, harsh brushing, teeth grinding, genetics, or even hormone changes. Smokers and people with diabetes have a higher risk of both gum recession and gum disease.
Receding gums are harmful because they leave the sensitive roots of your teeth exposed. Exposed tooth roots are highly vulnerable to infection, decay, damage like abrasion, and heightened sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. Gum recession also affects the appearance of your smile. Undergoing a gum graft for gum recession can improve the look of your smile, prevent further recession and bone loss, and protect your tooth roots from decay and sensitivity.
There are three different types of gum grafts. The most common is a connective tissue graft, which involves cutting a flap of tissue from your palate that is used to cover exposed tooth roots. Another type of graft is a free gingival graft, which involves taking tissue from the roof of your mouth and using it to build up gums that are very thin. Finally, pedicle grafts are used when you have enough healthy gum tissue in different areas to cut flaps that are then stitched onto the damaged or receded gum tissue. Contact our office to learn if gum graft surgery is right for you.