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Gum Diseases

Gum graft surgery

01/29/2009

Question:

I recently had gum graft surgery and everything seems to be going fine but what is really worrying me is the fact that I cannot brush my teeth. I had to go to a periodontist about 2 years ago because I have gum disease and collect plaque and tarter more easily than most people. They had to do a deep clean on my teeth and since then I usually spend about half an hour a night doing everything that they told me to do to PREVENT from having to have this done again. I am doing great with my gum disease and have improved alot but the recession which is not fixable was bothering me so I had the grafts. But now, not being able to do the things that I NEED to do with my teeth is driving me crazy because I feel that 1 to 2 weeks of not brushing my teeth is really going to ruin my gums again. Should I go get a cleaning asap whenever I can or is this going to cause alot of complications in the near future? I can`t floss either because I can barely open my mouth. Also how much damage happens when you do not brush your teeth for this long?

Answer:

We generally prescribe an antibacterial mouth rinse low in alcohol concentration (chlorhexidine) for the first two weeks after surgery. We also perform professional cleaning within one month because patients may have some accumulation. You should not mechanically brush or floss the surgical because this may move the graft material and will hurt the healing.

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Response by:

Binnaz   Leblebicioglu, DDS, MS, PhD Binnaz Leblebicioglu, DDS, MS, PhD
Associate Professor of Periodontology
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University