All Press Releases for August 13, 2009

Why Periodontists Are the Only Dentists Properly Trained to Perform Gum Grafts

Periodontist Dr. Miles Madison explains why gum grafts should be performed only by periodontists. The complexity and delicate nature of gum grafts requires that the surgeon have special skills & training beyond that of a general dentist.

    LOS ANGELES, CA, August 13, 2009 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Gum grafting is a periodontal surgery technique that can help people who have experienced gum recession. Gum recession is when the gum surrounding the tooth has pulled away, due to gingivitis, Periodontitis, aggressive brushing, or genetics, causing the roots of the teeth to become exposed.

During a gum graft procedure, a small strip of gum tissue is taken from the patient's palate or another donor source to cover the exposed root. This can be done for one tooth or several teeth to even your gum line and reduce sensitivity.

However, periodontists are the only dentists properly trained to perform gum graft procedures. Gum grafts are extremely technique sensitive, requiring someone with the proper education and experience, so they should only be done by periodontist and not by other dentists.

Periodontists (see are specialist dentist who complete three years of additional training beyond dental school. Periodontists are highly trained in proper diagnosis of gum diseases and conditions, and undergo extensive surgical training for treatment of gum tissues. This additional training allows periodontists to skillfully manage their patients, avoiding complications, and achieving optimum results. Periodontists are also trained to critically analyze new research article to separate the truth form the hype.

Some general dentists attempt gum graft surgery on their patients, but their training is often limited to a weekend course that often leaves them inadequately trained to provide optimum care.

Types of Gum Grafts

Different techniques are available for gum grafting (see There are also different patient variables that should be evaluated carefully by the periodontist to determine the ideal technique for each patient. Ideally, the periodontist should be versed in all of these techniques so that he or she can use the right technique for each case. Unfortunately, if a periodontist is only comfortable with one or two techniques then he or she might use the wrong approach in correcting a gum recession defect. When done properly, and with appropriate follow up care, gum grafts can last a lifetime.

The procedure is also relatively easy on the patient. Quite often, patients return to work the next day with nothing more than over-the-counter pain pills (ibuprofen) for post-operative medication.

The Benefits of Gum Grafts

Gum recession can make the teeth more sensitive to hot and cold food and drinks. Besides pain, receding gums can also make teeth more susceptible to cavities on the exposed roots. Gum grafts are used to replace gum that has been lost, alleviating the discomforting symptoms. Gum grafting helps cover the exposed tooth and root, as well as help prevent cavities. Gum grafting can also have a cosmetic effect, reducing the appearance of a "long tooth."

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About Dr. Miles Madison, DDS
Los Angeles Periodontist Dr. Miles Madison, DDS, specializes in dental implants, gum grafts, crown lengthening, sinus augmentation, and more at his practice Beverly Hills Periodontics & Dental Implants. Dr. Madison is board certified in I.V. sedation, and hypnosis and is a member of the American Academy of Periodontology, the California Society of Periodontists, the California Dental Association, and the Los Angeles Dental Society. For more information, please contact Dr. Madison at (310) 553-2940 or by email at [email protected].

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Brendan Gill
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