Soft Tissue Grafting
Why: Soft tissue grafting is done to help provide a tougher band of tissue in
areas where there is naturally thin or recessed tissue. Although it is not
guaranteed that root coverage will be acquired, our ultimate goal is to place
thick tissue in those areas to prevent further recession.
How: A small piece of tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth (either from the surface or a small incision is made and a piece of tissue is take from right below the surface) and placed in the necessary area. The doctor will clean the teeth using a polish and hand scaler prior to placing the tissue graft. You will leave with a few sutures on the palate and a few in the graft area. Packing is also placed over these surgical areas.
If desired, some cases ( usually larger ones ) are able to use a donor material called Alloderm. Alloderm is a sterilized collagen material that is used in place of palatal tissue. This minimizes patient discomfort due to no surface wound on the roof of the mouth. There is an additional fee for the Alloderm.
A patient who would rather not use the Alloderm but is uneasy about using their palatal tissue can opt for a stent. A stent is an acrylic retainer-like appliance that covers the roof of the mouth during the healing process so that eating, sleeping and speaking is more comfortable.