Gums, Don’t Leave Me! Issues with Receding Gums?
As we age, it is a common occurrence for the gums to begin to shrink or recede, exposing the roots of teeth and putting them at risk for damage and decay. You may not realize that your gums receding because it happens gradually, over time. If you are getting regular preventative care from your dentist (of course you are!) then he or she will likely have noticed, documented the recession, and spoken to you about causes and prevention. You may not be able to see the effects until one day your teeth look a little different when you smile. Maybe a little larger, or longer? It’s hard to put your finger on it. Or maybe you sip a hot or cold drink and feel the pain of a sensitive tooth. If your gums recede to that degree you will probably be referred to a periodontist who can perform a gum grafting procedure.
How is Gum Grafting Done?
Gum grafting or gingival grafting is a procedure which takes tissue from the palate (the roof of your mouth) and attaches it to the recessed gum, providing additional gum tissue to protect the delicate roots of the teeth. It’s a relatively easy procedure that doesn’t take very long to perform in the periodontist’s office. Gum grafting requires only local anesthetic in the areas of tissue harvesting and attachment. After the procedure, you’ll be back on your feet in no time, usually the same day. Eating and drinking may be difficult for a few days as the affected areas heal but you will be back to normal after that.
Does the Procedure Always Work?
The success rate of gum grafting is very high provided the procedure is done correctly by a qualified periodontist and that you follow the aftercare procedures to ensure proper healing. In our experience, patients are usually pleasantly surprised by the immediate impact gum grafting has on their smile. After the grafting process, the teeth appear to be a more natural length, and patients tend to be happier with their restored smile.
Keeping Those New Gums Intact
Receding gums are caused by a combination of age, improper brushing technique and even other issues like clenching and grinding can contribute. Changing the way you brush, or addressing other issues can slow down the damage but once recession occurs the gums won’t repair themselves. Whether you have already undergone a gum grafting procedure or your dentists is simply keeping tabs on your recession, for now, he or she can show you how to brush correctly in order to slow down or stop the process.
If you are concerned about receding gums, visit our periodontal practice in Mississauga and speak with our team of experts in periodontal disease. We specialize in dental implants, gum recession, crown lengthening, bone and gum grafting, the Chao pinhole surgical technique and more, we’d love to help you address your dental and smile concerns. Call us at 1-800-341-7471 or connect via email at [email protected]. Until then, keep smiling!