Gum Grafting

Gums provide vital support for our teeth as well as a natural defense against infection. When gums recede, gum reconstructive graft surgery can often repair the damage.

When recession is only minor and sufficient healthy gum (gingivae) remains, there may still be adequate protection for the tooth. In such cases, no treatment other than perhaps modifying your daily home care practices may be necessary. When recession reaches the mucosa, this signifies a complete loss of gum tissue, the first line of defense against bacterial penetration. The most common cause for gums to recede is periodontal infection and disease. Other factors that contribute to gum recession include heavy handed- aggressive brushing and at times, tooth grinding and clenching. As gums recede, roots of teeth can become increasingly temperature sensitive to hot and more especially to cold. In addition, unsightly black triangles can develop between the teeth. Worsening recession can make you more susceptible to the further spread of infection and inflammation that can accelerate the loss of tooth root support. The increased exposure of the softer dentin root surfaces can also predispose you to develop root decay (caries) and root gouging, all of which can lead to the eventual loss of teeth.

Fortunately, technology exists to turn back the hands of time and reconstruct the lost gum, restore the support to your teeth and improve your cosmetic appearance. Typically, an appropriately sized section of gum tissue is harvested from the roof of your mouth (palate) or transposed from an adjacent area to provide a stable band of attached gum (gingivae) around your teeth. Dependent upon your clinical situation, a gum (gingival) graft may be placed in such a way as to cover the exposed portion of the root. In Dr. Novack’s hands, gum graft surgery represents a highly predictable treatment. As in all elements of health care, there exists an art and a science that must be melded to successfully perform these very delicate and precise micro-plastic surgical procedures. Dr. Novack has a particular passion for restoring a natural pleasing look, function and support to teeth and in so doing, return you back to health. Gum graft surgery can be divided into various procedures and techniques, each customized to address a patient’s unique care issues.