A soft tissue graft may also be referred to as gum grafting. This procedure can be performed to improve the appearance of the gum line. Often, it is performed to cover roots that have been exposed as a result of gum recession or gum disease.
1. Is a Gum Graft Painful?
Gum grafting procedures are performed with a local anesthetic that numbs the area being treated. Patients may feel a tiny poke from the anesthesia needle. However, the medication takes only moments to diminish sensation in the mouth. After gum grafting, patients may experience soreness or tenderness around the affected tooth and, if applicable, where donor tissue has been taken. Comfort improves gradually over a few days and can be managed with prescription or over-the-counter pain-relieving medication.
2. What Treatment Options Are Available for Receding Gums?
Gum recession may occur for several reasons. Depending on the reason, there are various ways to address the problem. For example, if gums are receding as a result of brushing habits, the toothbrush can be changed to one with soft-bristles. Patients may also switch from a manual toothbrush to an electric or sonic toothbrush that encourages them to be gentler with their brushing motions. It is important to identify the reason for gum recession by undergoing a thorough dental exam. Your dentist can help you understand why your gums are pulling away from teeth and what you can do to halt the progress of recession.
3. Can Receding Gums Grow Back?
Gum tissue does not grow back. This is why gum recession is a problem that we prefer to address right away. If you notice the signs of receding gums, such as a tooth looking longer than normal, contact an office near you to arrange a checkup.
4. What is the Recovery from Gum Graft Surgery?
Patients who undergo gum graft surgery are provided with detailed care guidelines that help the gums heal as quickly as possible. It is important to follow these guidelines strictly to minimize the risk of infection and maximize comfort as the tissue heals. Some of the strategies that may be recommended include:
5. Can Receding Gums Heal? How Long Does it Take?
Gum recession may be caused by infection. In this instance, the gums absolutely need to heal. The only way for this to happen is to treat the infection that has developed. Infection in the gums is what we call gum disease. This condition progresses in stages. When treatment such as deep cleaning (scaling and root planing) is conducted early, recession may slow or stop altogether. If gum disease becomes severe, gum grafting and even bone grafting may become necessary. A gum graft typically heals completely within one to two weeks. Patients are advised to strictly follow post-treatment oral care instructions regarding cleaning the mouth, eating soft foods, and avoiding tobacco.