We all love a bright, healthy smile, but it’s not just about having great teeth. Your gums play a big role too! They not only make your smile look good but also keep your mouth healthy. Sometimes, though, your gums might need a little help, and that’s where a gum graft comes in. Let’s talk about when and why you might need a gum graft, explaining the situations where this procedure can make a real difference. 

periodontist checking gums after gum graft

What Is a Gum Graft? 

A gum graft is a dental procedure where a dentist takes a piece of tissue from one part of your mouth, typically the roof of your mouth, and uses it to cover areas of your gums. This procedure helps protect exposed tooth roots, improve gum health, and enhance your smile. 

When Is a Gum Graft Needed? 

Receding Gums 

Receding gums are a common dental issue where the gum tissue gradually pulls away from the teeth, exposing the sensitive tooth roots. This can lead to tooth sensitivity, aesthetic concerns, and even tooth loss if left untreated. Gum grafts are often recommended in cases of severe gum recession to cover and protect the exposed tooth roots, restore aesthetics, and prevent further complications. 

Gum Disease 

Periodontal diseases, such as gingivitis and periodontitis, can cause significant damage to the gums and supporting structures. In advanced stages, these diseases can lead to gum recession and the loss of gum tissue. A gum graft may be recommended to restore gum tissue and improve overall oral health in individuals with advanced gum disease. 

Cosmetic Concerns 

Some people may seek gum grafts for cosmetic reasons. Uneven gum lines, excessively long teeth, or gum tissue that covers too much of the tooth’s surface can impact the aesthetics of one’s smile. Gum grafts can help achieve a more harmonious and aesthetically pleasing gum line, enhancing the overall appearance of the smile. 


As we age, our gums can naturally recede, leading to cosmetic and functional concerns. Gum grafts may be recommended for older individuals to improve the appearance of their smile and maintain oral health. 

Genetic Factors 

Some people are genetically predisposed to gum recession, which may occur even without the presence of gum disease. In such cases, gum grafts can help address genetic factors that affect gum health and aesthetics. 

Your Dentist’s Evaluation Process 

No matter the reason, your dentist will take important steps before recommending a gum graft. They’ll carefully examine your gums, address your concerns, and assess your overall oral health. This includes checking the condition of your gums, measuring any recession, and considering your medical history, age, and genetic factors.  

Only after this thorough evaluation will your dental expert determine if a gum graft is the best solution to meet your specific needs, ensuring both the health and aesthetics of your smile. 

gum graft illustration

Need More Information About Getting a Gum Graft?  

If you’re experiencing any of the issues mentioned above, it’s important to consult with a dental professional to determine whether a gum graft is the right course of action for you. 

Here at Richard Newhart DDS, we are ready to assist you.  Remember that early intervention can prevent further complications and help you maintain a healthy, beautiful smile for years to come. Contact us 

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