10 Tips for Getting Soft Tissue Grafts
Your dentist may have suggested that you get a gum graft procedure done. A soft tissue graft surgery is performed to shield your teeth from the effects of gum recession and to improve the appearance of your smile.
According to Vita Dental Spring, most people may not notice that their gums have receded, because it is a slow process. A gum tissue graft is done to restore the damage done. Read on to know more.
During the tissue graft procedure, the dentist obtains a piece of skin from the roof of your mouth and the subepithelial connective tissue and then stitches back down to the gum tissue surrounding the exposed root.
Free Gingival Grafts
Just like the connective-tissue graft, free gingival grafts use of tissue from the roof of the mouth.
Instead of removing tissue under the top layer of flesh, a smaller amount of tissue is removed from the roof of the mouth and then attached to the recipient gum area.
Free gingival grafts are preferable for people who have thin gums or need additional tissues to enlarge the gums.
Pedicle grafts entail obtaining tissues from gums around or adjacent to the teeth needing repair. The pedicle is partially removed so that one edge remains attached. Next, the gum is then moved down to cover the exposed root and stitched into place. Oral surgeons perform this treatment in patients who have a lot of gum tissue near the tooth.
Where To Obtain The Graft Material
Most oral surgeons and patients would prefer using graft material from a tissue bank instead of getting it from the roof of the mouth.
Often, tissues that stimulate proteins are used to promote your body’s natural ability to grow bone and tissue. Dentists at Vita Dental Spring can recommend the method that will work best for you.
Recovery From Gum Tissue Graft
Following the procedure, you should be able to go home soon. Your dentist may give you sedatives to help you relax, which means you will need to arrange to have someone drive you home.
The dentist provides instructions on postoperative care, such as medication, diet, and physical activity.
Be careful not to brush or floss the wounded area until the affected area has healed. Rinse your mouth with a special mouth rinse and take antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection.
Eat soft foods such as eggs, yoghurt, cheese, and well-cooked vegetables
How To Know If The Graft Has Healed
It takes about eight weeks for tissue to mature and to determine how much mass has “taken.” If the graft tissue was thick, the top layer would peel off, but the more profound parts will remain. Whatever is left should be reddish, and may change to white or pink based on the thickness of the tissue.
Your dentist at Vita Dental Spring would need to re-assess the area and identify how much of it has taken. Often, it may be necessary to do flap surgery to bring what has “taken” more towards the root surface.
When to Call the Doctor
Call a doctor if you experience any unusual symptoms following surgery, including:
Continuous bleeding that won’t stop even after applying pressure for 20 minutes
Excessive pain, swelling, and bruising than expected
How Much Will a Gum Tissue Graft Cost?
Most dental insurers will pay a certain percentage of the cost of gum grafts. However, if you don’t have insurance, the price will depend on the work being done. Discuss with your dentist to know more about the payment options available.
Will I Need Another Gum Tissue Graft?
In as much as gum tissue grafts are effective at repairing gum recession, there is no guarantee that there would be no gum problem in the future. Nevertheless, regular oral checkups and routine dental care at home may help in preventing severe damages.
What Complications Should I Watch For After Surgery?
Sometimes, severe swelling and loosening of the sutures may cause the graft to move, and the surgery deemed unsuccessful. When this happens, it is good to wait until the surrounding tissues mature and try again
Tissue sloughing from the upper arch, though not frequent, has a lot to do with the size of the graft taken. Individual’s healing patterns differ, and the same applies to the pain threshold.
Any surgical procedure is bound to get infected at some point, thus delaying the healing process. Oral wounds are more exposed to continuous bacteria. Antibacterial or antiseptic mouth rinses are usually prescribed to control the multiplication of the bacterium in the first few days.
Dealing with the complications that may arise
A suggested approach is to create a plastic vacuum form of your upper arch. A thin, transparent plastic that perfectly fits your teeth is carefully trimmed to ensure sufficient coverage. It helps in providing pressure to the affected area and avoids irritation from food and the tongue.