Despite taking all proactive measures to care for your teeth and gums, serious dental problems can still arise that require gum surgery. Once your gums become damaged and/or infected, they should be treated by an oral surgeon. Without treatment, the problem will get worse and soon lead to teeth, mouth and jawbone dysfunction. Several modern procedures are available to treat diseased gums.
Gum surgery is done usually as a last resort to help reinstate the health of your gums. Two gum surgery procedures are a gingivectomy and a gingivoplasty. A gingivectomy is when gum tissue is surgically removed. A Gingivoplasty is when gum tissue surrounding your teeth is surgically reshaped. The sooner the dentist discovers gum damage, the easier the treatment may be.
About These Procedures
A gingivectomy is a surgical treatment for periodontal disease but can also be performed as a cosmetic procedure if pockets or spaces have formed between the teeth and gums. Any space located between the teeth and the gumline can harbor harmful bacteria that can cause further structural damage to the gums and teeth. Moreover, a gingivectomy is performed to remove excess gum tissue surrounding the teeth. This a measure taken by the oral surgeon to help you eat, speak and clean between your teeth better. A gingivoplasty is a procedure used to correct gum trauma, asymmetrical or malformed gums often so that they look more natural for cosmetic purposes.
Gingival Flap Surgery
The temporary separation of the teeth from the gums with the gums being folded back to remove a gum infection is known as gingival flap surgery. Gingival flap surgery is usually recommended for patients with moderate to advanced periodontitis. The dentist typically will attempt a procedure known as scaling and root planing before a gingival flap procedure is done if all the gum infection during the scaling and root planing procedure isn’t removed.
Gum contouring or crown lengthening is a cosmetic dental procedure performed to improve your teeth’s appearance. It is often done when patients have a condition in which the ratio of gums to the teeth is out of proportion. The surgeon will remove excess gum tissue to lengthen the appearance of the tooth to deliver a more attractive smile.
Soft Tissue Graft
Gum graft surgery is used to repair the defective gum when tooth roots are exposed due to receding gums which works toward the prevention of additional gum recession and the risk of bone loss. A gum graft can be used to develop gum tissue when there is excessive gum tissue loss or when there is a need to cover a tooth’s roots of a tooth. During this procedure, the oral surgeon will obtain the soft tissue graft by removing gum tissue from your palate or from another donor source that can be done for one or more teeth to reduce gum line sensitivity.
Treating Periodontal Pockets
Scaling and root planing will be done on the patient's teeth as the initial resort therapy to eliminate diseased periodontal pockets. An ultrasonic scaling device is implemented by the dental hygienist to effectively scrape away food debris, plaque, and tartar below the gum line and will manually sand the tooth and its root surface to make it smooth and free of disease. Scaling and root planing can be completed in two to four sessions depending on how much oral disease the patient has. Thorough oral hygiene procedures will require follow-up visits to track improvement to the patient’s oral care cleaning techniques at home.
The Prevention of Tooth Loss
All of the measures taken to prevent and reverse periodontal disease are taken to ultimately prevent tooth loss. Your dentist may refer you to a periodontist if your periodontal disease involves severe redness, inflammation, bone loss and loose teeth. Periodontal disease can only involve one tooth or involve many teeth with the spread of infection left untreated. Therefore, it is recommended that dental patients floss and brush their teeth at least twice a day with a toothpaste that fights bacteria to prevent gingivitis. Good oral hygiene practices can clean the surface of the teeth of food debris and plaque to eliminate bacteria from breeding around the gum line of the teeth.