Types of Gum Surgeries
Sometimes, gum disease becomes bad enough that surgery is required to repair the damage. The following are the gum surgeries that we can perform at Sunrise Dental:
- Pocket Reduction (AKA Gingival Flap Surgery) – the gums are folded back to remove bacteria present and secured against the teeth instead of being allowed to grow back naturally
- Regeneration – gums are folded back as in pocket reduction, but bone grafts, membranes, or proteins may be inserts to encourage the gum to regenerate
- Crown Lengthening
- Soft Tissue Grafting – tissue is taken from elsewhere in your mouth and attached to the gums to replace lost or receded tissue
What to Expect
We will use a local anesthetic before performing any gum surgery, as well as clean your teeth first. Once the affected gums are folded back to access the tissue below, scaling and root planing will be used to clean below the gum line. This also smoothens out any rough spots on your teeth, which can promote recurrence of gingivitis.
Following the surgery, your gums will be stitched back into place. The stitches can be self-dissolving, but in some cases you will need to return to the office to have them removed. This usually occurs 7-10 days following the surgery.
Recovery After Gum Surgery
If your gum disease treatment plan involved surgery, you might be wondering what to expect when it comes to recovery. Here are some tips that we have compiled to give you your best chance at a speedy, painless recovery:
- Manage Your Pain: You can probably expect some swelling and discomfort after your procedure. You can manage both with over-the-counter medications and liberal amounts of ice packs, which are designed to reduce swelling and numb the nerve centers in your mouth.
- Take It Easy: Give yourself some time post-surgery to relax and allow your body to heal. Avoid strenuous activities and exercise for the first several days at least, and be mindful of what you can manage for several weeks after your procedure.
- Embrace a Liquid Diet: Your gums will be sensitive after your procedure, so eating the right foods will be vital. Soups, smoothies, and other vitamin-rich liquid foods will be recommended for the first couple of days. At that point, you may reintroduce soft foods, such as cottage cheese or yogurt. Avoid foods with small particles or seeds that could get lodged in your healing wounds.
- Keep Your Mouth Clean: For the first 24 hours after your gum surgery, let your gums rest. After a day has passed, add one teaspoon of salt to an 8 oz. glass of room-temperature water and rinse your mouth with this mixture after every meal or snack. This helps gently clean bacteria from your gums and prevents infection.
If you want to learn more about the healing process or other techniques we recommend as part of our gum disease treatment options, don’t hesitate to reach out to our office. It’s our goal to keep your mouth and oral health at an optimal level.