Gum recession isn’t just a cosmetic issue. As your gums pull further away from your teeth, more of their roots get exposed, and they aren’t protected by enamel like the visible part of a tooth is. Because of this, tooth sensitivity is a common companion to receding gums. So is the risk of root decay.
The traditional fix for this is a surgical procedure called gingival grafting. Tissue is harvested from the roof of the mouth and then sutured to the gums. It’s effective but invasive. And it’s no longer the only option available.
In our office, we also offer a minimally invasive treatment that can have your smile looking great again within 24 hours, no cutting or stitches required. It’s called the Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique.
As its name describes, it involves making small holes in your gums, just the right size for a special instrument to be placed so Dr. Parsi can gently loosen and move gum tissue to cover the areas of recession. He then places small strips of collagen at the sites to stabilize the tissues as they heal.
Compared to conventional gingival grafts, there is less pain, swelling, and bleeding with the Pinhole Technique. Research has shown the results to be lasting, as well.
Of course, getting the absolute best results means also addressing whatever caused the recession in the first place. This is especially the case when gum disease is to blame, as it often is. Active disease will just wreck the tissues all over again. Regular deep cleanings, improved home hygiene, and improved nutrition are all critical for keeping gum disease in check.
If you smoke, chew, or vape, you should stop, as all of these can be just as damaging to gum tissue. (They’re all leading contributors to gum disease, too).
Another common cause is bruxism, or habitual clenching or grinding, especially during sleep. In some cases, a night guard or splint may be enough. In other cases, we may need to correct a misaligned bite. Malocclusion – literally, a bad bite – can be a factor in both bruxism and gum recession.
Oral piercings are notorious for damaging teeth and gums alike. In fact, gum recession is among the most common problems. Unfortunately, you may need to lose some coolness points and abandon these piercings for the sake of keeping your mouth healthy.
Yet another culprit is brushing your teeth too aggressively. Here, the fix is also simple: correct your technique so you’re brushing firmly enough to break up the biofilm (plaque) but not so hard that you’re destroying gum tissue.
Once you’ve successfully addressed the cause of your receding gums, the non-invasive Chao Pinhole Technique can quickly and more naturally get your smile looking its best again. The only other requirements are having enough healthy supporting bone and thick enough gum tissue. Without those, traditional grafting may be the better option.
But with them, the results couldn’t be better – and our patients who have opted for this procedure couldn’t be happier about it!