Gingival, or gum, grafting is a procedure that is performed to primarily increase the thickness of the gum tissue but also to cover roots that have been exposed by bone and gum loss.
There are two general types of soft tissue in a person's mouth: keratinized tissue, like the roof of the mouth, and mucosal tissue, like the inside of a the cheek. Keratinized tissue is very fibrous and strong and it attaches to the bone that holds the teeth in, forming a seal around the tooth that protects it from bacteria and trauma from brushing and eating. Normally, teeth have a layer of this strong tissue around them but sometimes teeth either do not develop it or they have a very thin amount. This can put the tooth at risk of losing bone and gum tissue, endangering the long term health of the tooth, causing sensitivity and root cavities, and being unesthetic.
While teeth can often do well with a small amount of recession, sometimes gingival grafting procedures are done to help the tooth so that the recession doesn't increase and to repair recession. Gum tissue is taken from elsewhere in the mouth, most often the roof, using a variety of techniques, depending on if the goal is to increase the thickness of the gums, cover exposed roots, or both. Occasionally, tiisue that has been donated from someone else and sterilzed is used instead of the person's own tissue. Please see some examples below.
In order to determine whether treatment is necessary and what type, an examination will need to be perfomed by one of our periodontists.
Recession #27-29 Initial
Recession #27-29 after a Connective Tissue Graft
Recession #11 Initial
Recession #11 after a Connective Tissue Graft
Recession #28 and 29 Initial
Recession #28 and 29 after a Connective Tissue Graft