older African American couple smiling and enjoying lifeAre your gums receding, making your teeth appear longer? Perhaps you have discussed the possibility of a gum graft with your dentist, but you aren’t sure if you want to go through with treatment. Gum recession can be caused by several factors, including periodontal disease, genetics, misalignment, and teeth grinding, among other things. If left untreated, gum recession can lead to a myriad of other oral health concerns, such as mobility and tooth loss. Our doctors at Metropolitan Dental Care offer a variety of periodontal treatments to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Today, we will explore a few aesthetic and oral health benefits of correcting your smile with a gum graft.

Gum Grafting Offers a Younger-Looking, Beautiful Smile

You have most likely heard the phrase “long in the tooth”, used to describe someone who has grown older. It is not uncommon for gums to recede with age, although some patients are simply more genetically predisposed to the condition. At our practice, we have patients of all ages who have experienced gum recession for one reason or another. A gum graft adds gums where you are deficient, and as a result, gives you a more refreshed and youthful appearance.

Gum Grafting Can Preserve Your Natural Jawbone

Gum grafting can certainly bring symmetry and balance to your smile. But did you know there are several health-related reasons for addressing gum recession, as well? When the gum tissue recedes, the bone underneath recedes as well. Even patients who have otherwise healthy teeth and gums can experience bone atrophy as a byproduct of gum recession. Therefore, a tissue graft can preserve the underlying bone and create a stronger foundation for your teeth.

Gum Grafting Can Protect Your Teeth from Decay

As the gum tissue moves further and further down the tooth, the root becomes exposed. Teeth roots are made from cementum, and are not covered with tenacious enamel, as the crowns of the teeth are. Therefore, they are more susceptible to tooth decay. A tissue graft can protect the vulnerable root of your tooth, keeping it resilient to cavities.

Gum Grafting Can Reduce Sensitivity

Gum recession can cause extreme hot and cold sensitivity, due to the exposed teeth roots. By covering the entire root surface with a tissue graft, we can reduce or altogether eliminate tooth sensitivity.

Which Type of Graft is Right for You?

At Metropolitan Dental Care, we offer three types of tissue grafts: connective-tissue, free gingival, and pedicle. Our onsite periodontist, Dr. Mike Norouzinia, can perform these procedures right here in our office for the convenience of our patients. The type of treatment required will depend on your unique needs. For example, it is not uncommon to experience recession around the lower front teeth. This is often due to a high frenulum attachment. (The frenulum is the piece of tissue that connects your lips to your gums.) At times, recession in this area may be too advanced to repair with a connective-tissue graft. In these cases, Dr. Norouzinia may recommend a free gingival graft. This type of graft has been used for decades, and is incredibly predictable. However, you may be able to see the faint outline of your graft once the healing is complete. For this reason, we do not perform free gingival grafts in the smile zone.

During your initial consultation with our doctors, we will determine the primary cause of your recession, and treat it accordingly. For example, if your recession is due to gum disease, it is important to eradicate bacteria first through periodontal treatments such as scaling and root planing or gum surgery. Once your teeth and gums are healthy, we can move forward with tissue grafting.

Contact Us to Learn More

If you have gum recession, and would like to consider your treatment options, schedule a consultation at our Lone Tree, CO practice. We can design a personalized treatment plan to address your needs. You can contact us online anytime, or call us at (303) 534-2626.