What Is Gum Grafting?
Gum recession occurs when the gums separate and migrate away from the teeth. Often caused by gum disease, a receding gumline leaves the root surfaces exposed and increases the risk of tooth sensitivity, root caries (cavities), and other issues. A receded gumline also makes the teeth look longer, which may change the appearance of your smile. At Cranston Dental Group, our team of distinguished practitioners offers gum grafting treatments to return health to your smile. Gum grafts use healthy tissue to repair receding gums and return the gumline to a better position. If you are in the Cranston or Warwick, RI area and have suffered gum recession, we encourage you to talk with our team about your options for gum grafting care.
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Ideal Candidates for Gum Grafting
You may be an ideal candidate for gum grafting if you have moderate or advanced gum recession. While a receding gumline is most often a result of bone loss caused by gum disease, the condition can also be caused by genetics, tobacco use, tooth misalignment, and bruxism (teeth grinding or clenching). Other factors that may lead to gum recession include overaggressive brushing and oral piercings (lip or tongue). The roots of the teeth are more susceptible to the oral environment and rely on your gums for protection. Exposed tooth roots may result in tooth sensitivity and place the roots at a higher risk for developing tooth decay or becoming damaged. During your visit, our team will evaluate your gum recession and help you determine whether gum grafting is right for you.
How Are Gum Grafts Performed?
The process of gum grafting adds healthy gum tissue samples to areas of recession in the gumline. We offer several types of gum grafting procedures based on individual needs:
- Connective-tissue grafts are the most common type used to cover exposed tooth roots and take gum tissue from underneath a small flap of skin on your hard palate (roof of your mouth).
- Free gingival grafts are similar except that tissue directly from the top layer on the palate is used to replenish your gumline. This approach may be especially beneficial for those with thin gums.
- Pedicle grafts borrow tissue from a neighboring tooth. With this option, we create a small flap and stretch the gums over the root to cover a receded area.
Gum grafting is performed in our state-of-the-art office under local anesthesia. Once the healthy tissue is ready, our team will suture it in place to your existing gums, covering exposed tooth roots. As your tissue heals, it will integrate seamlessly into your gums, effectively returning the gumline to a more favorable position and providing proper protection for your teeth.
Recovery Following Treatment
We recommend that you rest for the remainder of the day following your gum grafting surgery. Your gums may feel tender for a few days, which can be minimized with cold compresses to the face and over-the-counter pain medication. Our clinical team will go over your aftercare instructions, including what to eat, what to avoid, and how to care for your teeth and gums during the recovery process. A mouth rinse may be recommended to help control plaque and bacteria as your mouth heals. When you visit Cranston Dental Group for routine preventive care, our team will continue to monitor the health of your gum grafts.
Insurance Coverage for Gum Grafts
As a common periodontal treatment, gum grafting may be partially covered by a number of dental insurance plans. Before the day of your procedure, our staff will review your individual benefits and provide an estimate for any potential uncovered costs. Cranston Dental Group accepts a variety of payment options, including low-interest CareCredit finance plans, to help make your treatment convenient, flexible, and care-free.
Repair Receding Gums
Gum grafting surgery is a periodontal treatment offered by our skilled team at Cranston Dental Group to repair gum recession, improve your dental health, and make your smile more attractive. If you have gum recession due to advanced periodontal disease or other factors, please schedule an appointment at our modern Cranston, RI practice to learn more about the advantages of gum graft surgery.