Gum Grafting

When recession of the gingiva occurs, the body loses a natural defense against both bacterial penetration and trauma. Gum reconstruction using grafting techniques is a treatment option when gum recession causes sensitivity, becomes an esthetic concern or is progressive.

When there is 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 is lost.

In addition, gum recession often results in root sensitivity to hot and cold foods as well as an unsightly appearance of the gum and tooth. With significant gum recession, the area is more susceptible to further recession and with more root surface exposed, root caries and root gouging may occur as the root surface is softer than enamel.

before and after gum grafting

Gum Grafting Overview

For a brief narrated overview of the gum grafting process, please click the image below. It will launch our educational MiniModule in a separate window that may answer some of your questions about gum grafting.

Gum Grafting Overview

A gingival graft is designed to solve these problems. A thin piece of tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth or gently moved over from adjacent areas to provide a stable band of keratinized gingiva around the tooth. The gingival graft may be placed in such a way as to cover the exposed portion of the root.

The gingival graft procedure is highly predictable and results in a stable, healthy band of keratinized tissue around the tooth.