Gum Grafting

New York / New Jersey Periodontist Dr. Eric Linden

healthy smiles

When recession of the gingiva occurs, the body loses a natural defense against both bacterial penetration and trauma. When gum recession is a problem, gum reconstruction using grafting techniques is an option.

When there is only minor recession, some healthy gingiva often remains and protects the tooth, so that no treatment other than modifying home care practices is necessary. However, when recession reaches the mucosa, the first line of defense against bacterial penetration is lost.

In addition, gum recession often results in root sensitivity to hot and cold foods as well as an unsightly appearance to the gum and tooth. Gum recession, when significant, can predispose to worsening recession and expose the root surface, which is softer than enamel, leading to root caries and root gouging.

A gingival graft is designed to solve these problems. A thin piece of tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth or gently moved over from adjacent areas to provide a stable band of attached gingiva around the tooth. The gingival graft may be placed in such a way as to cover the exposed portion of the root.

The gingival graft procedure is highly predictable and results in a stable, healthy band of attached tissue around the tooth.

Soft Tissue Grafts

Periodontal procedures are available to stop further dental problems and gum recession

gum-graft1Before soft tissue graft
After soft tissue graft
After soft tissue graft

Periodontal procedures are available to stop further dental problems and gum recession, and/or to improve the esthetics of your gum line.

Exposed tooth roots are the result of gum recession. Perhaps you wish to enhance your smile by covering one or more of these roots that make your teeth appear too long. Or, maybe you’re not bothered by the appearance of these areas, but you cringe because the exposed roots are sensitive to hot or cold foods and liquids.

Your gums may have receded for a variety of reasons, including aggressive tooth brushing or periodontal disease. You may not be in control of what caused the recession, but prior to treatment Dr. Linden can help you identify the factors contributing to the problem. Once these contributing factors are controlled, a soft tissue graft procedure will repair the defect and help to prevent additional recession and bone loss.

Soft tissue grafts can be used to cover roots or develop gum tissue where absent due to excessive gingival recession. During this procedure, Dr. Linden takes gum tissue from your palate or another donor source to cover the exposed root. This can be done for one tooth or several teeth to even your gum line and reduce sensitivity.

What are the benefits of this procedure?

A soft tissue graft can reduce further recession and bone loss. In some cases, it can cover exposed roots to protect them from decay. This may reduce tooth sensitivity and improve esthetics of your smile. Whether you have crown lengthening to improve function or esthetics, patients often receive the benefits of both: a beautiful new smile and improved periodontal health – your keys to smiling, eating and speaking with comfort and confidence.