When recession of the gum occurs possibly through periodontal (gum) disease, trauma or an abrasive brushing technique, the body loses a natural defence bacterial penetration and trauma. When gum recession is a problem, gum reconstruction using grafting techniques are viable options alongside traditional restorative treatment measures such as desensitising agents and composite restorations at the gum margin.
When there is only minor recession, some healthy gum tissue often remains and this protects the tooth so that no treatment other than modifying home care practices are needed. However when the recession is greater, the 1st line defence against bacterial penetration is lost and this can then quickly follow on to gum disease, root sensitivity to hot and cold foods and a less than ideal cosmetic appearance at the gum line.
Traditionally gum reconstruction was achieved by carrying out connective tissue grafting procedures which involved taking tissue from the palate (roof of the mouth) and transplanting this into the area required.
This represents an entirely predictable procedure but has obvious disadvantages that it involves significant mouth surgery and the doctor is limited in the amount of tissue they can harvest (collect) from the palate in a single surgical procedure
Modern Gum Regeneration
A new approach to this type of traditional surgery allows one to avoid using connective tissue taken from the palate. This involves the use of Alloderm (Acellular Dermal Matrix).
This tissue is taken from a tissue bank and processed and in this type of surgery the body will absorb the graft material and replace it with the body’s own tissue. Typically in 4-6 weeks the graft material has been replaced with new gum tissue.
This technique allows for the treatment of large areas of gum recession or multiple areas of gum recession in a single treatment often involving pinhole surgery which greatly minimises any surgical swelling and gives instant and long lasting results.