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Periodontal disease often refers to bacterial plaque and infections around the gum and tooth root. It can happen around one or several teeth. In some cases, the gum tissue is damaged or shrinks. In its more advanced stages, surgery to create new gum tissue (and even bone growth) can be done. There are several techniques used to encourage new gum growth using donor tissue, man-made material, or tissue from the roof of your mouth.
Tell your dentist of any recent changes to your health, medications, allergies, or supplements.
Take your prescription medications, unless your dentist says otherwise.
Talk to your dentist or pharmacist if you are taking more than one drug. Some drugs can be dangerous when mixed. This includes over-the-counter medications and herb or dietary supplements.
You may be asked to take an antibiotic before surgery.
Arrange for a ride if you are having sedation.
Sometimes, sedative medications are used to make you more relaxed during surgery. If you are undergoing conscious sedation, you will be asked to not eat for at least 6 hours before surgery. Otherwise, you can follow a normal diet.
A local anesthetic will be used near the affected gum area.
Your periodontist may recommend conscious sedation. You will be awake, but will have no anxiety during the surgery.
This surgery is usually done in an outpatient setting. You do not need to stay overnight. If you are undergoing sedation, the periodontist or nurse will place an IV in your arm to deliver medication. Your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing will be monitored during and after the surgery.
The periodontist will numb the affected area with a local anesthetic delivered through a needle. The periodontist will make a small cut in the roof of your mouth and remove surface and/or connective (under the surface) tissue. This is the donor tissue that will be used for the graft. This area will then be stitched closed.
The new tissue flap will be repositioned on the damaged gum line and stitched into place. A dressing will be applied. A piece of mesh is sometimes placed between the gum and tooth to encourage growth.
If there is not enough donor tissue available on you, tissue from another person or man-made materials may be used.
American Academy of Periodontology website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Accessed April 19, 2010.
Gum graft surgery. American Academy of Periodontology website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Accessed August 26, 2014.
Periodontal (gum) disease: Causes, symptoms, and treatments. National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research website. Updated August 2012. Accessed August 25, 2014.
Periodontal pocket reduction procedures. American Academy of Periodontology website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Accessed August 25, 2014.
Periodontitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Updated July 9, 2014. Accessed August 25, 2014.
6/6/2011 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance ...(Click grey area to select URL) Mills E, Eyawo O, Lockhart I, Kelly S, Wu P, Ebbert JO. Smoking cessation reduces postoperative complications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Med. 2011;124(2):144-154.e8.
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This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.