Gum Surgery Overview
Gum surgery is performed for both restorative and cosmetic dental problems. Most often it is used as a treatment for patients with an advanced stage of gum disease (periodontitis). This occurs when plaque and bacteria accumulate in the gum pockets. The buildup can begin to create toxins that can affect not only your gums but also your teeth, jawbone, and ligaments. Depending on the extent of your condition, there are two common types of gum surgery used at Dental Health for treating gum disease — gingival flap surgery and gingivectomy. Gingivoplasty is a cosmetic dental procedure that reshapes and improves your gums after gum disease has been treated. Our Brattleboro, VT board-certified Dental Health team performs all three gum surgeries to eradicate advanced gum disease and help restore the appearance of your smile.
Best Candidates for Gum Surgery
An ideal candidate for gum surgery would be an individual who has an advanced stage of gum disease that can no longer be treated with a nonsurgical option. Typically, this means that the disease has begun to affect the roots of your teeth and may even be infecting the jawbone and ligaments in your mouth. You may be experiencing severely swollen and painful gums, loose teeth, or pus on your teeth and gums. Your gums may be overgrown and covering too much of your teeth (creating a "gummy" smile), or receding so your tooth roots are visible.
What to Expect with Gum Surgery
Prior to receiving treatment, our Dental Health team will evaluate your mouth to determine which gum surgery will be best for you. Depending on the gum surgery selected, we will go over your anesthesia and sedation options to keep you calm and comfortable during the procedure. Gingival flap surgery makes incisions in the gum tissue so it can be pulled away from the teeth. Once the enamel and gum pockets are exposed, a thorough cleaning is performed before the gums are closed with stitches. A gingivectomy removes excess gum tissue and then fully cleans the teeth and gum pockets. A gingivoplasty procedure is used to reshape and move your recessive gum tissue. In some cases, a gum graft may be performed as part of a gingivoplasty to make your gumline even.
Gum Surgery Recovery
Following gum surgery, you may experience some pain or swelling in the treated areas. Our team will talk to you about pain management and the best ways to help your gums heal at home. They may prescribe antibiotics or pain medication to take after your surgery. Once your gums have healed, it is important that you continue to maintain a proper and effective oral hygiene routine to prevent further infection with daily brushing and flossing. Twice yearly professional cleanings at Dental Health will help clean plaque and tartar that have built up on your teeth and prevent a reoccurrence of gum disease. During your annual dental exam, our team will assess your oral health to make sure your gums have properly healed and the gum disease has been addressed.
Gum Surgery Insurance Coverage
Gum surgery is typically seen as a medical necessity, which means most of the cost will most likely be covered by your insurance provider. Prior to your treatment, a member of our team will contact your provider to determine any additional costs. To help make your treatment easy to afford, we accept many payment methods, including low-interest medical financing. During your consultation with the Dental Health team, we can go over cost estimates and other financial information.
Periodontal (gum) disease can be painful and cause further problems like tooth loss, diabetes, and heart disease. Gum surgery is often an effective treatment option to eradicate severe gum disease and restore your smile. To learn more, contact our office in Brattleboro, VT to schedule your consultation with our Dental Health team.