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Soft Tissue Grafting

Soft Tissue Grafting

Soft Tissue Grafting might be needed after implant surgery or in instances where tissues need reshaping or restoration around teeth or implants. The goal is to restore and maintain attractive healthy tissues.

There are two types of skin in the mouth. The thin reddish lining is called mucosa, which contains minor salivary glands keeping the mouth moist. The second is called “gingiva,” it is a thicker light pink color and forms the band around existing teeth and the roof of the mouth.

When teeth are lost gingiva shrinks away. If insufficient gingiva is present tissue grafting may be necessary to increase the changes the implant is successful by creating a band for the implant to connect to. It also resists infection around teeth or implants by limiting the ability of bacteria to enter between the tooth or implant and the "skin". If there is inadequate gingiva around the implants, there is increased risk of pain, infection, and loss of the implant over time. Soft Tissue grafting can help maintain long term health of the implant.

The roof of the mouth is the most frequent source of graft material. A thin portion of the skin is removed from the area and then the area around the implant is prepared for the graft to take place. It takes 10-14 days for healing to take place and then sutures can be removed. This procedure is often performed under IV sedation.