What Is A Periodontal Free Gingival Graft Procedure?

Dr. Anderson Talking To A Gum Recession Patient Who Had A Free Gingival Graft Procedure

When you have thin, receding gums, you may want to talk with a periodontist about your treatment options. After all, untreated gum recession can lead to a higher chance of developing gum disease or tooth decay. Plus, gums that have pulled away from your teeth can make your smile look uneven.

One solution that you might be asked to consider is called a free gingival graft. When performed by a highly trained periodontist, a free gingival graft in Bloomfield Hills, MI, can be an excellent way to permanently restore your gums to a healthier place.


What Can You Expect During the Free Gingival Graft Procedure?

All free gingival graft treatments involve the surgical manipulation of soft tissues in your mouth. After you have been numbed, the periodontist will remove a section of soft tissue from one area and carefully suture it to the place where you have gum recession. Typically, the secondary soft tissue “donor site” is from your hard palate, which is the roof of your mouth.

After the donor tissue has been placed, your body will begin the healing process. Within a few weeks, the new tissue will begin to attach with the existing tissue, forming a thicker gum structure. When the free gingival graft site is completely healed, the periodontist may use minimally invasive dental lasers to reshape the gums around the teeth, if necessary.

Is a Free Gingival Graft in New Bloomfield, MI Right for Every Gum Recession Patient?

Free gingival grafts are well suited for patients who have very thin gums and cannot undergo other types of gum grafts like tunneling. However, patients will also need to have enough tissue elsewhere to provide a donor tissue graft.

Some of the advantages to undergoing a free gingival graft include being able to reverse the problems and symptoms of severe gum recession and thinning gums. For example, many free gingival graft patients are thrilled to feel less sensitivity when they eat or drink hot, cold, or sugary items.

Does It Take Long to Heal From a Free Gingival Graft?

Every patient’s body heals at a different rate and rhythm. Generally speaking, though, most patients will be mostly healed within two weeks of their free gingival graft procedure.

It is important to remember that what you do post-surgery can encourage the healing process. Therefore, follow the periodontist’s post-surgical instructions to the letter. This will set the stage for a more predictable outcome.


Should I Ask a Periodontist for a Gingival Graft?

Not sure how to proceed with your dreams of having plumper, healthier gums? Talk to a leading periodontist like Dr. Lauren Anderson at Anderson Periodontal Wellness. Dr. Anderson routinely performs gum recession treatments including free gingival grafts. She will be happy to walk you through all the procedures that may be right for your situation based on your gums and teeth, any diagnostics, and your unique health history and aesthetic goals.

Call our office at (248) 480-4910 to arrange your initial gum recession consultation with Dr. Anderson right away.

Dr. Anderson has received many awards throughout her career and focuses her practice on providing patients with individualized care based on their unique needs. She welcomes the opportunity to talk with you about your gum recession and to share the five technologically advanced treatments she offers, including the free gingival graft procedure.

Heal Quicker and Scar Less With Minimally Invasive Periodontics

Dr. Anderson Performing Minimally Invasive Periodontal Treatment On A Gum Disease Patient

Caring for your periodontal needs is essential, especially if you have gingivitis or periodontitis. However, it can be intimidating to hear about common periodontal procedures such as scaling and root planing or osseous surgery. Yet it is important to know that a few forward-leaning periodontists focus on practicing minimally invasive periodontics in Bloomfield Hills, MI to ensure you have the most comfortable experience possible during your office visits.


Understanding the Minimally Invasive Periodontics Philosophy

What does the term “minimally invasive” mean in terms of periodontics? The descriptor refers to a very conservative approach to treatment.

Consider a patient who has developed gum recession. Periodontists have a few options to help the patient. A periodontist who believes in practicing minimally invasive periodontics will suggest the treatment that is gentlest on the patient.

For instance, the tunneling technique is a minimally invasive solution to restore the gums to a healthier level. If a patient is not a good candidate for the tunneling technique, the periodontist will recommend another treatment that is going to cause the least disruption to the patient’s teeth, gums, and body system in general.

As you might imagine, the benefits of minimally invasive periodontics are widespread. Patients feel more relaxed during their procedures, their bodies heal faster, and the tissues have a lowered chance of developing scar tissue. At the same time, the underlying condition—whether early-stage gum disease or a gummy smile—is treated in the most appropriate, physically kind way.

Where Does Minimally Invasive Periodontics Fit in With the History of Periodontics?

For decades, periodontists had limited periodontal treatment methods to choose from to help their patients find relief. And as noted in one published abstract, periodontists have only been moving toward more minimally invasive treatments for the past 50 years. Before that time, periodontists often applied more radical gum disease treatments that occasionally left patients with fewer teeth. Plus, those treatments did not always keep the gum disease from recurring.

By the 1980s and 1990s, minimally invasive dental practices started to become more talked about at the medical school level. The thought process was simple and straightforward: Could superior outcomes for dental patients be achieved without causing unnecessary physical (or, in the case of patients with anxiety, psychological) trauma? As it turns out, they could and can.

How Does Our Practice Approach Minimally Invasive Periodontics?

If you were to take a poll of periodontists around the country, you would find that few have fully embraced minimally invasive periodontics. Instead, they continue to perform treatments that work but leave the patients with more bruising, swelling, and chance of post-treatment discomfort. Yet some pioneering periodontists like Dr. Lauren Anderson are leading the way in making minimally invasive approaches a mainstay of periodontal practices.

Dr. Anderson has a wealth of experience in the field of periodontics and concentrates on studying the newest techniques to bring to her patients. Her belief is that as more modern, safe, and minimally invasive approaches to treatment become available, those approaches should be made available to patients. As such, she takes the time to learn about the latest minimally invasive periodontics solutions and offer them to her patients.

A good example is a technique for surgeries referred to as the “MIST” protocol. “MIST” stands for “minimally invasive surgical therapy.” During a MIST treatment for gum disease, the gum is not opened all the way. By using smaller tools and microsurgery principles, Dr. Anderson can give the patient exceptional, dependable results without aggressive manipulation of the soft tissue.

It is worth mentioning that technology has helped make the MIST protocol and other minimally invasive periodontal treatments a reality. Lasers, tiny equipment, and other items that would not have been available decades ago are now available to periodontists.


Choose a Periodontist Who Believes in Minimally Invasive Periodontics in Bloomfield Hills, MI

If you believe you need the help of a periodontist to diagnose and treat your gum disease or other issues related to your mouth and gums, consider making an appointment at Anderson Periodontal Wellness. Our practice in Bloomfield Hills, MI has been built around the concept of leaning into minimally invasive approaches to give patients better outcomes and experiences throughout the gum disease management process. Contact our team today by calling (248) 480-4910!

Soft Tissue Grafting to fix Tooth Root Sensitivities! – Case Study

Meet our patient MC who presented with sensitive roots on the canines.  Soft tissue grafting was completed via a single 5mm incision under the lip. In this “tunneling” procedure, grafting material and the gum are then moved over the roots and sutured. This minimally invasive surgical technique is ideal for this application as it restores the position of the gum and reduces the sensitive root from being exposed. Please see below for before and after treatment photos where tissue was moved down over the roots leading to improved anatomy, health and elimination of root sensitivity to tactile and temperature change.

If you experience sensitive roots or would like to restore lost gum tissue please reach out to our team at Anderson Periodontal Wellness (248)-480-4910. Dr. Anderson will meet with you and explore treatment options applicable to your case.

Dental Patient's Sensitive Teeth Before Their Soft Tissue Graft

Dental Patient's Sensitive Teeth After Their Soft Tissue Graft