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An Introduction to the Three Types of Gum Grafts

March 8, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — friscoperio @ 7:50 pm
Illustration of gum graft being placed on tooth root

Gum recession is a common problem among adults, particularly those who have gum disease or other risk factors of poor gum health. If your gums are receding, you may feel self-conscious about your appearance, and your exposed tooth roots may be extra-sensitive. What can you do to restore your oral health? Your periodontist might recommend that you undergo a surgery known as a gum graft. This procedure has the potential to restore lost tissue, enhance your appearance, and protect your oral health. How is gum grafting performed? This blog post explores three different methods.

Connective Tissue Grafts

This is the most common type of gum graft. During the procedure, a periodontist makes an incision in the roof of the mouth (called the palate) to create a small flap. Then, they take tissue from under the flap. This tissue, known as subepithelial connective tissue, is then stitched onto the gums at the site of the recession. The flap on the palate is also stitched back into place in order to promote proper healing.

Free Gingival Grafts

Similar to a connective tissue graft, a free gingival graft uses tissue from the palate. However, instead of using subepithelial tissue, a free gingival graft takes tissue directly from the roof of the mouth, which is then attached to the gums. This technique is commonly used for individuals who have thin gums and need extra coverage to protect their tooth roots.

Pedicle Grafts

To perform a pedicle graft, a periodontist creates an incision in the gums near the site of the gum recession. They do not completely remove the gum tissue; instead, they create a flap so they can gently rearrange the gums to cover the exposed tooth roots. This approach is only possible for patients who have a significant amount of healthy gum tissue near the site of their gum recession.

What to Expect from a Gum Graft

While the prospect of undergoing a gum graft might seem a bit unsettling, you can be confident that your periodontal care team will do all they can to help you have a comfortable experience and easy recovery period. Most patients are back to feeling normal within just a couple of weeks!

Meet the Practice

Dr. Zachary A. Carnow is a dentist and board-certified periodontist. He has already helped countless patients cope with gum recession and other periodontal health problems via gum grafting and a range of other procedures. If you are curious about how he may be able to help you enjoy a healthier smile, contact Frisco Periodontics and Dental Implants at 214-619-4990.

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