Gum recession refers to the loss of gum tissue. Typically this happens as a result of periodontal disease or trauma to the gums (e.g., injury, aggressive brushing, teeth grinding), which causes more of a tooth’s root structure to be exposed. When a person is missing a tooth or multiple teeth, they may lose some of the their gum tissue since there is no longer a root structure for the gums to support.
The team at Coastal Jaw Surgery has helped numerous patients throughout Tampa address gum recession through the use of state-of-the-art care. This includes surgical soft tissue regeneration and grafting techniques. Let’s take a moment to consider how gum recession following tooth loss can be addressed through advanced oral surgery.
How Gum Recession Affects Implant Dentistry Treatment
In order to successfully perform implant dentistry treatment, it’s important for patients to have healthy gums in place. A combination of gum tissue and bone structure need to be in place in order to ensure optimal stability. This is because treatment requires a process known as osseointegration to occur. This refers to the fusion of a dental implant with your existing gum tissue and bone structure, allowing the implant to function just like a natural tooth root.
When you are missing gum tissue or bone structure in the area of a tooth gap, there’s nothing to worry about. Special grafting procedures can build up that missing structure and make you a candidate for implant dentistry.
About Gum Grafting
Gum grafting is a process that involves rebuilding the lost gum tissue when recession has occurred. During this process, it’s common for oral surgeons to use donor tissue from the roof of the mouth, though in some cases soft tissue grafts taken from cadavers can also be used.
Ideal Candidates for Gum Grafting
The best candidates for gum grafting are people who have suffered serious gum recession or who have lost gum tissue density as a result of tooth loss. They should be in good health overall to tolerate an oral surgery and have realistic expectations about the nature of the surgery and what it entails.
The Gum Grafting Procedure
The oral surgery to place a gum tissue graft is a relatively simple procedure. Patients are given a local anesthetic to avoid pain and may be placed under sedation as well if needed.
During the procedure, small incisions are made in the recipient area of the gumline. This creates a pocket to support the gum graft. The donor tissue is carefully fit in this pocket and sutured in place to heal.
How Long Does Healing Take After Surgery?
It will typically take a week to two weeks for the gumline to heal properly.
During this time, patients will be asked to eat soft foods that are lukewarm. Hot and cold foods may cause irritation and sensitivity. Patients may also be asked to avoid chewing foods on the same side of the mouth as the tissue graft in order to prevent potential harm to the sutures. In addition, use of a straw will be prohibited during this time since the suction caused by using a straw can undo clots and sutures necessary for surgical healing.
Patients will be given detailed post-op instructions during the consultation process.
Proceeding with Implant Dentistry
Once the graft is fully healed and a dentist deems a patient ready, the implant dentistry process can begin. Keep in mind that this will add time to the overall treatment process, but it also helps ensure optimal results.
Schedule a Consultation at Coastal Jaw Surgery
To learn more about soft-issue grafting and how we can improve your periodontal health, be sure to contact our advanced dental care center today. The team at Coastal Jaw Surgery will help you have a healthy and beautiful gumline that’s excellent for supporting dental implants.
Call us today at 1-800-NEW-LOOK (Outside Florida: 727-877-0011) to learn more about the cost of dental implants or use the contact form below to reach out to us. We have locations in Palm Harbor, Trinity, and Spring Hill for your convenience.