If you’re a Rancho Santa Fe resident and your dentist has diagnosed you with gum disease, technically called chronic periodontitis, it’s likely that your dentist will refer you to San Diego periodontist Dr. Tina Beck for gum surgery. This type of gum surgery serves to eliminate inflammation, preserve and even regenerate infected or disease bone, and reduce gum pocketing to facilitate long term maintenance and gum health. However, there are many different types of gum surgery, including for treatment of gum recession.

Receding gums occurs when the attachment of the gums to your tooth’s root has become so damaged or weakened that it erodes, exposing the tooth’s root. Unfortunately many patients this of this as  just a cosmetic concern, but that is misguided. While aesthetics are important, gum recession can also put you at risk for the following conditions:

  • Developing cavities along the gum line
  • Teeth that become very sensitive to hot or cold temperatures, or even just to the touch
  • Inflammation and erosion of the underlying bone that supports the teeth
  • Loosening of the teeth
  • Abscess of the gum and bone due to the weakened attachment

Clearly, these complications are not ideal and most Rancho Santa Fe patients would choose to prevent them from occurring if given the opportunity. Luckily Dr. Beck is an expert at treating gum recession by performing corrective gum surgery. Using minimally invasive techniques including subpeithelial connective tissue grafting and the Pinhole Surgical Technique, Dr. Beck corrects gum recession and prevents these undesirable complications.  These procedures are performed on an outpatient basis using a variety of sedation dentistry options to ensure your optimal comfort.

What is Gum Surgery?

When many Rancho Santa Fe patients are told they need gum surgery, they may initially get anxious, or even fearful. After all, few people look forward to having a surgical procedure done, even if minimally invasive. Being told that you need to see a specialist for surgical procedure can understandably be met with hesitation. But rest assured that when you are working with Dr. Beck and her team, you are in expert hands,… literally. As a UCLA-trained dentist, then completing 3 additional years of education at of one of the world’s best specialty training programs in periodontal (gum) surgery, you’ll be hard pressed to find a more knowledgeable and skilled surgeon.  What makes Dr. Beck even more impressive is that she actually cares about you and your overall well-being! Her reviews don’t lie. Dr. Beck is a high-skilled dental professional who always puts you, your comfort, and your health and her first priority.

This types of gum surgery is an outpatient procedure that is performed in the comfort of Dr. Beck’s personal office, where you’ll have your choice of sedation options. In most cases Dr. Beck will need to remove a small piece of tissue from under the gum on the tongue-side of your upper back teeth. She then transfers this piece of highly regenerative, stem-cell rich tissue to the area of recession, gently tucking it underneath the area of recession.  Very small stitches are then used to stabilize the graft in place.

Although it may seem overwhelming, most patients are surprised and relieved to discover how easy the procedure is and how fast they heal. Depending on your unique situation and the severity of your recession, Dr. Beck may even be able to use the pinhole surgery technique and eliminate the need for removing tissue from the palate at all! Since every Rancho Santa Fe patient is different, your unique surgical treatment plan will differ too.  Call today to discuss your treatment options!

Recovering from Gum Surgery

When told they need to have gum surgery, many Rancho Santa Fe patients are curious about what their recovery will be like. Dr. Beck knows that her periodontal patients don’t want to experience any unnecessary pain with their surgery, so she uses the most advanced, minimally invasive techniques to accelerate healing, including a product called Emdogain, a protein-based growth factor that stimulates your stem cells to multiply and activate, speeding up the healing process and minimize your discomfort.* In fact, many of Dr. Beck’s gum surgery patients report that thanks to Dr. Beck’s techniques, they have almost no pain after the procedure!*

To relieve the minimal pain that is sometimes experienced most patients only require over-the-counter medications, like Advil, to manage post-operative discomfort. Because every patient is different, Dr. Beck may prescribe a few doses of a stronger medication to be sure that you are comfortable, regardless of the severity of your condition. Much to the surprise of many of Dr. Beck’s patients, a liquid diet is not required after gum surgery. In fact, you are encouraged to begin eating solid food as soon as the local anesthesia, AKA novocaine, has worn off (typically a few hours after you get home from your appointment*).

Life After Gum Surgery

For many of Dr. Beck’s Rancho Santa Fe patients, gum surgery permanently resolves the gum recession.*  Not only does their smile once again look more youthful and healthy, they are no longer at risk for root cavities along the gum line, bone loss, tooth sensitivity and loosening, or future tooth extraction.*

If you’ve been told that you have receding gums, and you don’t want to risk the possible complications of this condition, seek out the expert advice of Dr. Beck immediately to prevent worsening of your condition, and regain the youthful health and aesthetics of your smile. Schedule an appointment today by calling her San Diego offices at (858) 635-6700.

* Individual results may vary.