Gum Grafting and Surgery
When you visit the clinics of Westlake Dental Center, our dentists don’t just check on your teeth, we also check your gums as well. We will look for signs of gum disease and gum recession. If we find that your gums are receding from your teeth, we will recommend gum grafting to address the problem.
Gum recession is a condition in which your gums seem to pull away from your tooth, which exposes the root of your tooth. This condition is actually not as rare as you may think, and some estimates say that as many as 12% of all adults have this problem.
When the gums recede, it does so slowly. It’s like erosion; you may not notice it happening until it’s already too late and the gums have exposed much of the root. When this happens, the results aren’t exactly nice to look at, and it will certainly affect your appearance if it happens to any of your front teeth.
The recession of the gums will also start giving you additional problems. The exposed tooth may become more sensitive, and you’ll start feeling pain when you consume hot or cold food and drinks. If you don’t see a dentist for your receding gums, the lack of support for the root may eventually cause the tooth to loosen and fall out.
If you visit our clinic and we find out that your gums are receding, we will use a gum graft to repair the damage and keep it from getting worse.
There are several types of gum grafting procedures. In the most common procedure, we will take tissue from the roof of your mouth (palate). We will cut a flap of skin on the palate and then use the tissue underneath the flap. If your gums are naturally thin, then we may use the tissue directly from the palate. But if you have plenty of gum tissue around the tooth, we can partially cut a flap from the other gum tissue and pull it down to cover the exposed root.
Once the procedure is done, we will give you instructions to help with your recovery. In general, these instructions are much like those you get when you have your tonsils removed or your wisdom teeth extracted. For the next week or two, you’ll be limited to soft and cool food items, you’ll need to rest without any strenuous physical activity, and you may need medications.
When the gum graft is from your palate, it may feel uncomfortable for a few days. The pain feels like a burn but it should go away quickly. But if the graft came from the gum tissue around your teeth, then there should be very little discomfort at all.
On our website you’ll find the contact info for our dental clinics in Ingleside, Waukegan, Lake County, and in other IL cities. At Westlake Dental Center, we can fix those gums so that your teeth will look better and you don’t risk losing your teeth through gum recession. Call our Westlake Dental Care office at: (847)268-4299.