Gum Graft: Why you need it and What to Expect

Gum Graft: Why you need it and What to Expect

Apr 01, 2020

Gum graft or gingival graft is a procedure that protects your teeth from the gum recession effect. The gum recession process involves pulling away of the teeth-surrounding tissue.

Gum recession will expose the roots of the teeth. This causes the surface of the root to be more vulnerable to decay and become even more sensitive. The supporting bone is also damaged.

The gum graft surgery in Ajax is carried out by a periodontist recommended by Rossland Landing Dental Care. The gum specialist takes off tissue from your mouth’s roof or from a gum tissue that is nearby. It is then attached to the region where the gums have worn out. The procedure is a quick one, and when it is completed, you can leave immediately.

Preparation for a Gum Graft

There exist three forms of gingival graft:

  • Pedicle graft
  • A graft of the connective tissue
  • Free gingival graft

These options will be discussed by you and your periodontist, and a recommendation will be made based on your needs. Once you have settled for the procedure to be done, fasting and diet change is not necessary prior to the surgery.

You are just required to go for your appointment. The gum specialist confirms the graft type. You will, however, be required to have company to the doctor and back home.

Some of the medications for discomfort and pain that may be administered to you do not guarantee your safety while driving. You will, therefore, need someone to drive you back home.

What to Expect

As soon as you arrive at your periodontitis, you will be taken to the procedure room. While here, the specialist will use local anesthesia to numb the region where the surgery will take place.

Although rare, there are some cases where general anesthesia may be administered to you to make sure you are in a state of euphoria as the surgery is carried out. This, however, is not recommended because of its associated risks.

Basing on your needs, one of these will be performed:

  • Free Gingival Graft: A small tissue is removed from your mouth’s roof and stitched to the part in need of gum tissue. This is done in cases where the gums are so thin they need some extra tissue for the prevention of further recession.
  • Graft of the Connective Tissue: A small piece of connective tissue is taken from beneath the mouth’s roof and stitched to the region in need of gum tissue.
  • Pedicle Graft: A tissue flap is created from a region near the gum recession. The flap is used in covering the place of the receding tissue.

Most dentists prefer tissue bank graft material to tissues from the mouth. Once the procedure is done, your mouth is washed out using an antibacterial mouthwash.

The Recovery Period

You can leave immediately after the dental restoration is done. If your doctor wants to put you under observation, you may have to wait for one or two hours. During your recovery period’s first weeks, eat soft and cold foods to avoid damaging the graft. Hard foods may burn or even cause irritation in the graft.

To prevent buildup plaque on the teeth, infections, and graft issues, you will be advised to use antimicrobial mouthwash for about two weeks.

Avoid brushing or flossing in the graft area until the doctor declares it safe. Doing this before healing can open up the wound or even cause infections. Refrain from exercising and engaging in any vigorous activity until it is safe to do so.

The level of pain you feel after the surgery is dependent on the performed gum graft. If there wasn’t any removal of tissue from your mouth, the pain will be lesser. If there were, you may experience more pain and discomfort.

Any Complications to look out for?

The chances of experiencing gum graft complications are rare. Few people experience bleeding around the area and even graft rejection.

What is Next?

The healing process can take close to two weeks. After the suturing has been done, you need to schedule follow-up appointments weekly to ensure your healing is proper and your graft was a success. After healing, you can brush your teeth and floss. It may take one month for full healing depending on the body’s general health and the manner in which you care for your mouth in the period of recovery.

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