Implant Dentistry and Periodontics - Michael D. Edwards, DDS, MSD
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Pinhole Surgical Technique

Do you think you have gum recession? Check to see if your gums are creeping away from your teeth. Its causes come from nighttime teeth grinding, aggressive brushing, certain medication, and even genetics. Gum recession can be a very uncomfortable problem to have. Although it is possible for gum tissue to grow back, healing usually doesn’t keep up with the cause of the damage. This could lead to an ever-receding gum line. Fortunately, modern dental procedures like the Pinhole Surgical Technique, performed by an Indianapolis periodontist, can help. Here is more information about pinhole surgery, and why gum recession is so serious.

The Problem With Gum Recession

Gum tissue is important for several reasons. Its main responsibility is creating a flexible support system to hold your teeth in place. When recession damages the structure, the teeth can become loose and fall out.

Gum tissue also seals out bacteria and food particles. It keeps pathogens from invading the deeper tissues of your mouth. Recessed gums allow bacteria to colonize deeper into the gum tissue and closer to the jaw. The extra bacteria contributes to periodontal disease. Since periodontal disease sparks an inflammatory response in the gum tissue, gum recession and gum disease work hand in hand to destroy your smile.

Gum recession exposes the dental roots are also more prone to decay since they aren’t covered with a layer of hard, protective dental enamel. This puts them at a higher risk for developing painful dental decay and infections. Also, since dental roots are yellow, gum recession gives your smile an aged, unattractive look.

The Pinhole Surgical Technique: An Overview

Before the invention of pinhole surgery, dental surgeons covered exposed gum tissue by sewing grafts. During this surgery, they harvest dental tissue from other areas of the mouth. Flaps are then cut around the problem area. They sew the graft into place and stitch it shut, creating many wounds that the patient had to care for in the days and weeks following surgery. Additionally, this procedure was uncomfortable and bloody for patients. Sometimes, for full results, you would need more than one procedure.

To help patients recover from gum exposure without discomfort, Dr. John Chao, MAGD, developed the pinhole surgical technique in the early 2000’s. Before pinhole surgery, your periodontist numbs the mouth with a local anesthetic. Then, he makes a tiny incision about the size of a pinhole above the affected tooth or teeth. Next, the periodontist uses proprietary tools to push down the existing gum tissue to cover the root exposure. Tiny collagen strips are then placed inside of the tunnel within the gum tissue, holding it in place and encouraging healing.

Pinhole Surgical Technique Indianapolis

If you are struggling with gum recession or gum disease, you may be a candidate for the pinhole surgical technique. Contact Dr. Edwards today to learn more!

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Benefits of Pinhole Surgical Technique

Pinhole surgery is fast, effective, and comfortable for patients. Here are a few of the powerful benefits offered by the Pinhole Surgical Technique.

Are You a Candidate for Pinhole Surgery?

Because pinhole surgery is so non-invasive, most patients in the Indianapolis area are great candidates for the procedure. To be eligible, patients dedication in maintaining proper oral hygiene. They will need to visit their periodontist in Indianapolis for follow-up care. They also need to avoid gum-eroding activities like teeth grinding and aggressive brushing. Before pinhole surgery, Dr. Edwards will talk with you about your medical history, dental history, and your oral health goals.

The best way to determine whether you are a candidate for pinhole surgery is by making an appointment with Dr. Edwards for a consultation. During this consultation, the doctor can talk with you about the benefits of pinhole surgery, explain in greater detail how the procedure works, and which other restorative dental techniques could help you to achieve your dental goals. If you have signs of periodontal disease, Dr. Edwards can also talk with you about gum disease treatments that will improve the health of your smile.