Treating Receding Gums: Traditional Gum Surgery vs. Laser Treatments

Posted on: August 16, 2018

A dental patient has receding gums when the gum tissue that protects the root of a tooth has been pushed back, typically due to gum disease. This occurrence leaves the root exposed to acids and bacteria in the patient's mouth that teeth roots are not designed to be able to withstand.

That often leads to tooth decay, sensitive teeth and the tooth eventually falling out. Gum disease can be stopped in its early stages with simple things like improving the patient's oral hygiene routine, but it does require surgery once full-blown periodontitis develops.

Key features of laser and traditional gum surgery

1. Laser treatments

Laser dentistry is becoming increasingly popular nowadays. It involves the use of a dental laser to break down tartar and plaque that is irritating the patient's gums. The laser is also used to kill any bacteria in the periodontal pockets.

The critical features of laser gum treatments include:

  • It does not involve the surgical cutting of the patient's gums
  • Since there are no incisions made around the periodontal pockets, there is no need for stitches afterward
  • There is little to no bleeding during laser treatments
  • It keeps gum recession to a minimum
  • The patient is back to normal right after the treatment
  • It preserves the gum tissue between teeth

2. Traditional gum surgery

This is a procedure that patients often dread. It involves the surgical cutting and cleaning of the patient's periodontal pockets. Unlike laser treatments that do not require any anesthetics, it is a must for traditional gum treatments. While the patient's gum tissue will be stitched back up after being cut open for the procedure, the area will remain sore for a few weeks.

The key features of traditional surgery include:

  • The patient's gum tissue is cut open and sometimes removed for grafting
  • The patient's gums have to be stitched back up after the treatments
  • Bleeding after the procedure is common
  • It can lead to further gum recession
  • It can create spaces between your teeth
  • Recovery takes at least a few weeks, and the patient is instructed only to eat soft foods during that period

Why laser treatments are the best option

By comparing the key features of the two procedures, it is quite apparent the advantage goes to laser treatments.

Receding gums are a serious dental issue that can be hard to detect during its early stages. It often leads to the loss of teeth when left unchecked. Most people who have this oral issue are not even aware of it, so the bacteria colonies under the person's gumline get to multiply and wreak havoc on the patient's gum and bone tissue.

Despite the seriousness of having receding gums, patients have traditionally been reluctant to get gum surgery. Most people are not exactly thrilled about the idea of getting a shot in their gums, having their mouth cut open, being prodded with metal tools and then getting stitched. After that, the patient will still need to deal with a three-week recovery period.

We are always here to help you! 

Contact one of our dentists to learn more about treating gum recession. We can help guide you in making the best choice for your oral health and any gum recession issues you may be having. 

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Premier Dental Care Of Utah, request an appointment in our West Valley City dental office here: Or call us at (801) 316-6577.

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