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Uptown Dental - Patient experiencing gum issues

What is Gum Grafting?

Gum grafting, also known as gingival grafting or periodontal plastic surgery, is a dental procedure aimed at repairing receding gums. It involves the transplantation of gum tissue from one part of the mouth to another to cover exposed tooth roots or to enhance the thickness of the gum tissue.

Introduction to Gum Grafting

Maintaining healthy gums is crucial for overall oral health. Gum recession, characterized by the exposure of tooth roots due to the loss of gum tissue, can lead to various dental issues such as tooth sensitivity, decay, and even tooth loss. Gum grafting serves as an effective solution to restore and enhance the gum tissue, improving both oral health and aesthetics.

Causes of Gum Recession

Several factors can contribute to gum recession, including periodontal disease, genetic predisposition, hormonal changes, tobacco use, and aggressive brushing or flossing habits. Regardless of the cause, addressing gum recession promptly is essential to prevent further damage to the gums and underlying tooth structures.

What is Gum Grafting?

Gum grafting is a surgical procedure performed by a periodontist or oral surgeon to augment the gum tissue. There are different types of gum grafts, including connective tissue grafts, free gingival grafts, and pedicle grafts, each tailored to address specific needs and preferences.

Benefits of Gum Grafting

The primary goal of gum grafting is to restore and enhance gum tissue, thereby improving oral health and aesthetics. By covering exposed tooth roots, gum grafting reduces tooth sensitivity, prevents further gum recession, and protects against tooth decay and loss. Additionally, gum grafting can enhance the appearance of the smile, boosting confidence and self-esteem.

Preparation for Gum Grafting Surgery

Before undergoing gum grafting surgery, patients will have a consultation with their periodontist to discuss their concerns, goals, and treatment options. During this consultation, the periodontist will evaluate the oral health and determine the most suitable approach for gum grafting. Patients will also receive instructions on how to prepare for the procedure and what to expect during the recovery period.

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Gum Grafting Procedure

On the day of the surgery, patients may receive local anesthesia or sedation to ensure comfort throughout the procedure. The periodontist will then harvest tissue from a donor site, typically the roof of the mouth or adjacent gum tissue, and graft it onto the recipient site where gum recession has occurred. The graft is carefully positioned and secured in place to promote proper healing and integration with the surrounding tissue.

Recovery and Aftercare

Following gum grafting surgery, patients may experience some discomfort, swelling, and minor bleeding, which can be managed with pain medication and cold compresses. It is essential to adhere to post-operative instructions provided by the periodontist, including dietary restrictions, oral hygiene practices, and attending follow-up appointments for monitoring progress.

Risks and Complications

While gum grafting is generally safe and effective, there are potential risks and complications associated with any surgical procedure. These may include infection, bleeding, gum sensitivity, and inadequate healing. However, with proper care and monitoring, the likelihood of experiencing complications is minimized.

Long-Term Outlook

The success of gum grafting depends on various factors, including the patient’s oral hygiene habits, overall health, and adherence to post-operative care instructions. With diligent maintenance of oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups, the results of gum grafting can be long-lasting, preserving gum health and supporting optimal dental function.

Cost of Gum Grafting

The cost of gum grafting can vary depending on factors such as the extent of gum recession, the type of graft performed, the geographic location of the dental practice, and whether dental insurance covers the procedure. Patients are encouraged to inquire about the cost and payment options during their initial consultation with the periodontist.


Gum grafting is necessary to repair receding gums, prevent tooth sensitivity, decay, and loss, and improve the overall appearance of the smile.

While some discomfort and swelling are expected after gum grafting surgery, patients are typically provided with pain medication to manage any pain or discomfort effectively.

The recovery period after gum grafting surgery varies from patient to patient but generally takes about one to two weeks for the initial healing process. Complete recovery may take several months.

Yes, gum grafting can be performed on multiple teeth simultaneously if necessary, depending on the extent of gum recession and the patient’s overall oral health.

Yes, alternatives to gum grafting include minimally invasive procedures such as enamel matrix derivative application and guided tissue regeneration, which aim to stimulate natural gum tissue growth and repair.

At Uptown Dental Centre in Downtown Edmonton, we pride ourselves on offering exceptional care and expertise in gum grafting procedures. Our experienced team understands the importance of healthy gums and is dedicated to providing personalized treatment plans tailored to each patient’s needs. With state-of-the-art facilities and a commitment to excellence, we strive to ensure that every patient receives the highest quality dental care in a comfortable and welcoming environment. Trust us to restore your smile and enhance your oral health with our advanced gum grafting techniques.

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