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Gingival (Gum) Grafting

Gum Graft Illustration

Oral Facial Surgery of Orange Park provides gingival grafting in Orange Park, Florida. Call 904-269-5195 or contact us today to learn more and schedule an appointment.

What is Gingival Grafting?

Gingival grafting is a procedure used to replace lost gum tissue. Receding gums may be caused by gum disease, brushing too hard, genetics, or aging. As the gum tissue gradually pulls away from the teeth they have less support and may become loose or sensitive. During a gingival (gum) grafting procedure, tissue is taken from another part of the mouth and applied to the teeth.

Benefits of Gingival Grafting

Gingival grafting offers many dental and oral health benefits:

Reduced sensitivity. When gum tissue recedes it leaves part of the tooth root exposed, which can lead to sensitivity. Gum grafting reduces sensitivity by covering the portion of the exposed root.

Improved support for your teeth. Replacing lost gum tissue provides better support for your teeth that are loose or at risk of becoming loose.

Lower risk of tooth decay. The root portion of a tooth is softer and more susceptible to decay than the crown portion of a tooth. Covering the exposed root with new gum tissue protects it from decay.

Natural looking smile. Receding gums can make the teeth look long, but gum grafting can restore your natural smile.

Are You a Good Candidate for Gingival Grafting?

Do you have noticeably receding gums? The telltale signs of receding gums are long looking teeth, gaps between the gums and teeth, and a line or ridge on the tooth where the gum tissue used to be. If you have any of these signs, you may be a good candidate for gingival grafting. If receding gums is due to existing gum disease, the infection will need to be treated first before gum grafting can be done. A brief evaluation can help us determine if gum grafting is right for you.

What’s the gum graft recovery timeline?

Your surgeon will probably want to check on your gum graft one week later. Then, you’ll have routine follow-ups until your periodontist releases you back to your general dentist for continuing care.

During this time, they’ll provide you with specific instructions. In general, here’s what you can expect:

The first day

Following your procedure, you’ll experience some bleeding, swelling and discomfort. To manage these side effects, take all medications exactly as prescribed by your surgeon. Get lots of rest and avoid strenuous activities.

Eat soft, cool foods, such as yogurt, pudding, or smoothies.

Keep the surgical area clean using an antibacterial mouthwash. Don’t brush or floss directly on the gum graft, as this can damage it and lead to failure. (You can brush and floss your other teeth as your comfort level allows.)

The first week

Bleeding should subside within the first 24 hours to 48 hours. Swelling will continue for three to four days. You may also develop bruising during this time. These side effects are normal and should subside within the week. Continue taking all medications as prescribed.

You can incorporate more soft foods into your diet as you’re able, including things like eggs, pasta, fish and cooked vegetables.

Gently brush your teeth near the surgical site, but don’t brush directly on your gums. Don’t brush or floss around the gum graft until your surgeon says it’s safe.

The second week

Swelling and bruising should begin to fade, and your comfort level should continue to improve. Ask your surgeon when it’s safe to begin decreasing your medication dosage.

As your comfort level improves, you can incorporate more solid foods. However, you should still avoid hard, crunchy or spicy foods until your surgeon clears you.

Once your surgeon says it’s safe to do so, you can resume normal brushing and flossing.

Why Choose Oral Facial Surgery of Orange Park?

Our patients are our top priority, which is why we use minimally invasive techniques for gingival grafting that reduce discomfort and allow for faster healing and recovery. We also provide a variety of anesthesia and sedation options to help you feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible. Our office is equipped with the latest technology in dental and oral surgery for advanced diagnostics and surgical precision.

Frequently Asked Questions About Gingival Grafting

Is gingival grafting a cosmetic procedure?
Whether or not gingival grafting is cosmetic or medically necessary depends on the reason for the procedure. If the purpose is to treat and prevent gum disease or to reduce sensitivity, it is considered to be medically necessary. However, if the purpose is to improve the appearance of your teeth, it would be considered cosmetic.
Where does the new gum tissue come from?
Soft tissue is typically removed from the soft palate at the roof of the mouth for use as replacement gum tissue. This tissue is similar to gum tissue, making it compatible and highly successful.
How long does it take to recover from gingival grafting?
The gum tissue typically heals in about 1- 2 weeks, but everyone is different. It could take less time or more time depending on a variety of factors such as your age and natural ability to heal. Plan on post operative swelling and bruising.
What type of anesthesia is needed for gingival grafting?
Most gum grafting procedures can be performed with local anesthesia to numb the areas being addressed. If you feel nervous or anxious about the procedure, additional sedation may help, such as nitrous oxide or an oral sedative.
When can I start brushing my teeth again after gum grafting?
You can brush your teeth 24 hours after gum grafting as long as you avoid the areas that received gum grafts. Those areas should be avoided when brushing and flossing until your surgeon clears you.
When can I resume normal routines?
You should avoid exercise, heavy lifting and other strenuous exertions for at least the first week. These activities increase your heart rate and can lead to more discomfort, bleeding and swelling. Be sure to clear it with your surgeon before you resume these activities. Most people can return to work or school in one day to two days.
What are the advantages of gum grafting?

Gum tissue grafts offer a number of benefits. Including:

  • Reduce your risk of gum disease.
  • Reduce your risk of cavities. (Exposed teeth roots are vulnerable to decay.)
  • Decrease tooth sensitivity.
  • Improve the appearance of your smile.
What are the risks or complications of gum graft surgery?

Complications following gum graft surgery are uncommon, but they can happen. Possible complications include:

  • Infection.
  • Excessive bleeding.
  • Rejection of the gum graft (failure).

If you notice heavy bleeding, pus or anything else that doesn’t look right, contact your surgeon right away.

What are gum graft failure symptoms?
If your gum graft fails, you’ll probably notice a large patch of white tissue that has come off of your tooth. Its lack of color means that the gum graft has lost its blood supply and is dying. If you notice this or have other concerns, such as pus at the surgical site or a fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit, call your surgeon immediately.

To learn more, call 904-269-5195 or contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Contact our office today to schedule your appointment!

2301 Park Ave, Suite #101
Orange Park, FL 32073
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