Grafting is a procedure used to replace / restore missing bone or gum tissue. A gingival graft (also called gum graft or periodontal plastic surgery) is a generic name for any of a number of surgical periodontal procedures whose combined aim is to cover an area of exposed tooth root surface with grafted oral tissue. The covering of exposed root surfaces accomplishes a number of objectives: * Prevention of further root exposure, * Decreased or eliminated sensitivity, * Decreased susceptibility to root caries, * Improved cosmetic.
Perhaps you wish to enhance your smile by covering one or more of these roots that make your teeth appear too long. Or, maybe you're not bothered by the appearance of these areas, but you cringe because the exposed roots are sensitive to hot or cold foods and liquids.
Waterlase technology allows to perform gum grafting procedures in minutes with virtually no bleeding at the operated site. In most cases, it is not necessary to take painful gum grafts from other parts of the mouth, like the palate. Precise Waterlase energy sterilizes the area, dramatically reducing postoperative discomfort and promoting faster healing.
There are two types of gum tissue in the mouth, one of which surrounds the necks of the teeth and is thick and protective in nature (keratinized gingiva).
The other of which lines our cheeks and floor of the mouth whose purpose is to be elastic and mobile in nature (mucosa).
When there is only minor recession, some healthy gingiva often remains and protects the tooth, so that no treatment other than modifying home care practices is necessary.
However, when recession reaches the mucosa, the first line of defense against bacterial penetration and trauma is lost.
In addition, gum recession often results in root sensitivity to hot and cold foods as well as an unsightly appearance to the gum and tooth. Gum recession, when significant, can predispose to worsening recession and expose the root surface, which is softer than enamel, leading to root caries and root gouging.
Aggressive brushing - potentially? Some people believe that aggressive brushing with a hard bristled brush may be a co-factor in recession or erosion of the neck of the tooth.
Excessive biting forces - clenching and/or grinding? This can result in bending / flexing of teeth, which will often result in fracture of a small portion of tooth structure at the gum line (abfractions) and consequently bone and gum recession.
Maloccluded and misaligned teeth? Teeth that positioned outside the normal arch form of the jaw are subject to having abnormal forces placed on them causing recession.
When treating recession by gum grafting, the causative factor must also be addressed in order for the grafting procedure to be successful.
- Cosmetic Gum Grafts:
Esthetic gum grafting can be used to "plump up" the gum tissue in an area that is deficient and would result an unaesthetic cosmetic makeover. Remember the teeth and gums should exhibit symmetry, yet sometimes one side is deficient, therefore, gum grafting may be essential to achieve symmetry prior to a cosmetic make-over.