If your tooth shows recession (shrinkage of the gum) or the overlying gum is very thin a soft tissue graft may be required. A Free Gingival Graft with Frenectomy or Connective Tissue Graft may be used. Grafting can aim to prevent further recession, alleviate sensitivity and improve the appearance with root coverage.
Free gingival graft
A small piece of tissue is taken from your palate (roof of the mouth) and placed over the tooth, in the area that has had recession once the site is prepared. The area that has recession may also have very thin gum tissue. The aim of the surgery is to produce thick gum (keratinised gingiva) in the area with a graft with root coverage. At the same time a frenectomy may be performed, to lower the attachment between the lip and the gum, to enable better cleaning in this area and prevent pull on the graft as it heals. After a few days, the area will normally look strange with an irregular surface. After it has healed, the graft is usually lighter in colour than the surrounding gum at the base but this is not visible because of the lip.
Connective tissue graft
A small piece of tissue is taken from your palate (roof of the mouth) and placed over the tooth, under the gum, in the area that has had recession. The gum is then pulled up higher to cover the graft and the root.
All procedures are carried out with local anaesthetic to make the area numb.
Intravenous (IV) sedation is used to make you very relaxed and as it is amnesic, you will forget most of the procedure. A drug is used via a vein in your arm.
Oral sedation also makes you feel very drowsy/relaxed.
After Surgery Care
After surgery care is extremely important please read this article for full information.