Gum grafts can also be known as gingival grafts. This periodontal procedure covers the tooth’s root surface with oral tissue.
The roots of your teeth can become exposed when periodontal disease progresses and you experience severe gum recession. Or, you could experience an exposed tooth root due to trauma to your mouth or brushing your teeth too aggressively.
Before a gum grafting procedure, your dentist will thoroughly clean your teeth to remove all plaque and bacteria. After your cleaning, your dentist will also provide some tips for proper home care to prevent plaque and bacteria from building up in your mouth and reduce the chances of gum disease in the future.
At your gum grafting appointment, your dentist will numb the area with local anesthetic. If your procedure includes tissue from your palate, your dentist will carefully harvest this healthy tissue. If it's coming from donated home tissue, you can skip this part.
The dentist will make a very small incision on either side of the area receiving the gum graft. Then the dentist will place the graft over the area and secure it in place with a few stitches. This will prevent the tissue from shifting. Finally, your dentist will cover the area with surgical material to allow it protection while it heals.
While you might see some extra tissue in the first few weeks after the procedure, your gums should normalize in appearance and feel healthy after about six weeks.