If you have receding gums, you can meet one-on-one with Dr. Nick or Dr. Elliot at Long Island Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry in Huntington, Long Island to discuss your treatment options.
A gum graft and reconstruction solves the problem of receding gums, which can cause pain and health complications. In South Huntington, residents can turn to Long Island Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry for complex dental procedures like gum grafts. Our board-certified cosmetic dentists in Huntington Station perform gum grafts to improve the health and appearance of our patients’ smiles.
Overview of Gum Grafting and Reconstruction
A gum graft is an oral surgery performed when a patient has receding gums. This health problem is exactly what it sounds like: The gum line drops lower on the teeth, exposing more of the tooth. Gum recession is also characterized by the pulling away of the gums from the teeth, causing small pockets to form. In these pockets, food debris and bacteria can accumulate, which increases the risk of a serious oral infection. Eventually, it’s possible that tooth loss and jawbone breakdown could occur.
A gum graft and reconstruction can fix this problem by taking a graft of gum tissue and applying it to the area of thinning gum tissue. Gum grafts will reduce the risk of complications from periodontal disease. This procedure will also protect the sensitive tooth roots, which will reduce the risk of tooth decay and addresses sensitivity to hot and cold food and beverages.
As an added bonus, gum graft surgery improves the aesthetic appearance of your smile.
Types of Gum Graft Techniques
There are three main techniques for gum reconstruction treatments. The dentist will do a thorough oral examination before determining which technique is best suited to your needs and current oral health status. The most commonly used technique is the connective tissue graft.
- Connective tissue graft: The dentist makes an incision at the palate, or roof of the mouth, and removes a small amount of subepithelial connective tissue from underneath the flap. The flap is stitched back to the roof of the mouth and the connective tissue is stitched to the receding gum tissue.
- Free gingival graft: This technique is very similar to the connective tissue graft. However, instead of making a flap at the palate, the dentist removes tissue directly from the palate. The tissue is then applied to the receding gum line. Free gingival grafts are typically used for patients who have very thin gum tissue and need a larger graft.
- Pedicle graft: Patients who have lots of gum tissue adjacent to the receding gum line may be candidates for the pedicle graft. The pedicle graft doesn’t affect the palate. Instead, the dentist will create a flap, called a pedicle, from the nearby excess tissue. The flap is folded down over the area of thinning gums and reattached.