Gum Grafting
One of the most noticeable indicators of periodontal disease is receding gums, which occurs when the gum line lowers down the root of the tooth. Depending on the severity of the disease, recession may be contained to only one tooth, but in many cases the disease spreads to larger areas of the gums. Besides affecting the appearance of your smile, receding gums can cause a number of unpleasant symptoms, including cavities, tissue inflammation, root exposure, and root sensitivity. Dr. Scott Silverstein and Dr. Matthew Parker provide gum grafting services at their offices in Milford and Cincinnati, respectively.

The Purpose of Gum Grafting

Gum grafts offer many benefits. Some people elect to undergo the procedure solely for cosmetic appeal, repairing receding gums. It is more frequently used to combat gum disease. Since gum tissue is the first line of defense against bacteria, a higher gum line adds important protection and reduces the risk of tooth and gum problems.

Types of Gum Grafting Procedures

There are three different types of gum grafts used to repair receding gums:

• Connective-tissue grafts
• Free gingival grafts
• Pedicle grafts.


Connective-Tissue

During a connective-tissue graft, the most common of the three procedures, Drs. Silverstein and Parker take tissue from underneath a flap of skin in the roof of the mouth. The extracted tissue is then sewn to the gum tissue around the exposed root. Over time, a higher gum line forms as the two fuse together.

Free Gingival

For patients with thinner gums, Drs. Silverstein and Parker will most likely recommend free gingival grafts. With this type of graft, the tissue for the new gum line is taken directly from the mouth’s roof rather than from underneath a flap of skin.

Pedicle

Pedicle grafts are best for patients with sufficient gum tissue around the tooth, because the tissue for the graft is extracted from there instead of the roof of the mouth. A flap – or pedicle – is cut, leaving one edge attached. The flap can then be pulled up or down to cover the receding gum line. The tissue flap is stitched into place, allowing the area to heal.

For more information on receding gums and gum grafting, please call Drs. Silverstein and Parker at 513-334-5997.
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