Gum surgery may sound intimidating, but it doesn’t need to be. Soft tissue grafting is a simple procedure designed to help patients dealing with gum recession. Whether you don’t like how your mouth looks as a result of gum recession or are having trouble eating hot and cold foods, soft tissue grafting can help.
Gum recession can be caused by different factors, some controllable and some not. Periodontal disease, over brushing, trauma, or poor tooth position can all contribute. Gum recession is when the tissues surrounding the tooth begin to pull away, exposing more of the tooth or the root. Exposure of the root is dangerous because it is such a sensitive area. Soft tissue grafting is a simple procedure that can improve the look and feel of your mouth. Here is everything you need to know about soft tissue grafting.
Reasons for Soft Tissue Grafting
There are three main reasons people want or need soft tissue grafting. Aesthetics, comfort, and gum health. Aesthetically, more exposure of your tooth can be unsightly and alter your smile negatively. Soft tissue grafting can be used cosmetically to return your smile to its former beauty.
Comfort can be an issue because of the root exposure. The root is very sensitive, leading to discomfort. Eating hot or cold foods may become very unpleasant. Soft tissue grafting, though, will protect the exposed root.
Sometimes the procedure is absolutely necessary just to protect your gum health. Periodontal disease is a progressive condition which goes after the soft tissue in your mouth. Soft tissue grafting can combat this tissue loss.
How the Procedure Works
Your dentist has three different options when it comes to soft tissue grafting. Connective tissue grafts, free gingival grafts, and pedicle grafts. Depending on your specific issues your dentist will select the procedure that is right for you. All three procedures are similar in that soft tissue from another part of your mouth will be used to better protect your root.
Regardless of the type of soft tissue grafting procedure your dentist chooses, you will be able to go home right after the procedure. If the doctor uses sedation, you’ll need to arrange for a ride. Your dentist will give you specific instructions for taking care of your mouth after the procedure. Depending on where the soft tissue was removed you may experience discomfort for a few days afterward.