When patients have gums that are receding and drawing away from their teeth are prime candidates for gum grafts. Receding gums are a serious concern because they expose the roots of the teeth, which in turn makes them vulnerable to decay and possible infection. Taking a bit of tissue from the roof of the mouth, it is attached or grafted to the gum tissue. This procedure does not take much time and the patient is able to return to their daily routine immediately.
There are several different kinds of gum grafts. The first kind is a free gingival graft where, as mentioned above, a small section of tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth and applied to the gums.
A connective tissue graft is done by opening a small area on the roof of the mouth and a piece of connective tissue is taken from beneath the uppermost layer of tissue. This is then stitched to the area that requires addition gum tissue. This is the most common kind of graft.
The pedicle graft is performed by creating a tissue flap beside the damaged gum. The flap is then placed over the receding gums. This is extremely successful because the blood flow does not stop.
The Full Healing Process of Gum Grafts
Full recovery should take approximately two weeks. A regiment of antibiotics will help prevent infection from taking hold. Ice packs will help keep the swelling down. Patients should avoid hot and cold foods as they can slow down the healing process. They should adopt a soft food or liquid diet for the first few days to allow significant healing to take place. Light exercise is recommended because blood flow helps send nutrients to the surgical site. Proper oral hygiene is a must. Gentle brushing and rinsing are recommended. If there are questions about the recovery period let us know.