AlloDerm® Dental

Routine check-ups, biannual cleanings, in conjunction with proper brushing and flossing are essential to maintaining healthy gums; however, sometimes, even those patients who are diligent about following these recommendations require treatment for gum disease. At Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, we offer a variety of dental procedures to help maintain and restore the teeth, and the gums.

Gingival Recession is on the Rise

Due to the destructive tendencies of gingival recession, its increase in frequency has become an issue of great concern for Dr. William P. Lamas. Unfortunately, just bonding an exposed root will not stop the recession process, but merely temporarily covers the exposed area; however, at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, Dr. Lamas can address a receding gum line with a gum graft.

The two main reasons for gingival recession include periodontal disease and aggressive brushing of the teeth, both of which can lead to:

  • root sensitivity;
  • an unattractive smile;
  • a loss of supporting bone;
  • plaque buildup;
  • tooth decay; and/or
  • an increased risk of future gum recession.

In addition, poor occlusion, tongue piercing, poor orthodontic movement, gum recession, genetics and tooth anatomy, may increase the likelihood of gingival recession.

During one of the gum graft procedures Dr. William Lamas performs, he utilizes the revolutionary Regenerative Tissue Matrix from AlloDerm®. The key to successfully treating gingival recession with the AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix is early intervention. In addition, Dr. Lamas offers the Traditional Gum Grafting Procedure as well as the innovative Pinhole Surgical Technique™.

The Importance of Seeking Treatment Right Away

Early intervention is vital because once inter-proximal bone loss occurs, tissue height is lost and regaining lost tissue at the level of the cementoenamel junction (CEJ) is not possible: The CEJ refers to the enamel on the portion of the tooth’s crown that meets the cementum on the root of the tooth.

Furthermore, if gingival recession is left untreated, individuals typically experience a greater tendency for tooth/root decay as well as a heightened sensitivity to certain foods and temperatures; therefore, seeking treatment for gingival recession (i.e., a receding gum line) early on to halt the destruction of the underlying bone, soft tissues and root surfaces is essential to ensuring that the roots of the teeth will remain securely anchored within the jawbone.

Gum Grafting Procedures Available at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami

If your gumline has already receded, one of the gum grafting procedures that Dr. Lamas performs at his office in Miami may be able to address this problem. At Lamas Dental Specialists, the gum grafting procedures available include the Pinhole Surgical Technique™, the Traditional Gum Grafting Procedure and a gum grafting procedure using the revolutionary AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix.

Who Should Consider Seeking Treatment for Gingival Recession?

Anyone who has gingival recession should consider seeking treatment with Dr. William P. Lamas at his office in Miami. He offers several procedures for the treatment of gum disease: These procedures include the Gum Grafting Procedure with AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue, the Traditional Gum Grafting Technique and the Pinhole Technique™.

What to Expect at an Initial Consultation with Dr. Lamas in Miami

The first step towards addressing gingival recession is scheduling an initial consultation with Dr. William P. Lamas at his office in Miami. It is during this consultation that Dr. Lamas will examine your teeth and gums as well as order X-rays to determine if gum grafting using AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix is possible. If treatment with the AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix is not feasible, he may recommend a Traditional Gum Grafting procedure or the Pinhole Technique™. Each of Dr. William P. Lamas’ recommendations are designed to provide you with the best possible results.

Understanding Gum Disease, a Receding Gumline and Tooth Loss

If your gums are healthy, they will fit snugly around your teeth, feel firm when you touch them and will not bleed as you brush, and floss. While brushing twice a day with a toothpaste that contains fluoride and flossing are important steps to maintaining a healthy mouth, if your gums start to bleed while you brush and/or floss, you may have gum disease. Since periodontal disease is the number one reason that people lose their teeth, seeking treatment right away is recommended.

The characteristics of the disease determine which of the four stages an individual has.

Here are the four stages of gum disease:

1. Gingivitis

– the plaque buildup along the gumline causes the gums to swell and/or become tender. Seeking treatment at this point is recommended because the bone and gum have not been negatively affected yet; therefore, once the gingivitis is addressed, as long as you implement a satisfactory daily oral-hygiene routine and biannual cleanings, you should be able to prevent a recurrence of the disease. However, if treatment is not sought, the plaque along the gumline hardens into mineralized plaque (i.e., calculus, tartar), which consists mostly of bacteria: The amount of bleeding from the gums increases and the disease advances to mild periodontitis.

  • Recognizing gingivitis

    – the gums appear ‘puffy’ due to inflammation. Bleeding during brushing and flossing is common. Tenderness may also be present.

  • Treating gingivitis

    – typically, a professional cleaning to remove the mineralized plaque that has accumulated on the teeth is performed.

  1. Mild periodontitis

    – the gum tissue and bone that are responsible for supporting the roots of the teeth are now under attack. Although this stage of gum disease is serious, if it is caught and treated early enough, Dr. William P. Lamas can prevent further damage.

  • Recognizing mild periodontitis

    – gums may become more tender and bleed easier than before. In addition, bleeding may be a bit heavier than what is seen with gingivitis.

  • Treating mild periodontitis

    – scaling and root planing is the initial nonsurgical step used. This deep cleaning process removes deposits of tartar and plaque that exist on the teeth, on the surfaces of the roots and beneath the gumline. The scaling and root planing procedure helps the gum tissue heal and the pockets to shrink.

  1. Moderate periodontitis

    – once this stage of gum disease is reached, irreversible damage occurs. As pockets begin to form beneath the gumline, food particles and plaque become trapped; thus, providing the perfect environment for bacterial growth. While the damage that has already taken place is irreversible, Dr. Lamas still recommends seeking treatment. Implementing an improved at-home dental hygiene regimen and biannual cleanings could help stop additional damage.

  • Recognizing moderate periodontitis

    – the gums begin separating from the teeth, which allows for the buildup of plaque at the bone, the roots of the teeth as well as at their supporting tissues. Gums may appear bright red or purplish and there may be pain upon chewing.

  • Treating moderate periodontitis

    – scaling and root planing is used first to remove plaque and tartar buildup. This procedure helps the gum tissue heal, shrinking the pockets. If this procedure is unsuccessful in shrinking the pockets, surgical intervention may be recommended. Surgical intervention may include a gum grafting procedure using AlloDerm’s® Regenerative Tissue Matrix.

  1. Severe periodontitis

    – this final stage of the disease leaves the individual with severely damaged bone and tissues. This damage to the support system of the teeth can cause them to loosen or shift. Sometimes, Dr. William P. Lamas can use aggressive treatment to save a patient’s teeth; however, each patient is unique. The only way Dr. Lamas can determine if a patient’s teeth can be saved is by performing an examination.

  • Recognizing severe periodontitis

    – teeth start to become loose and/or shift, chronic bad breath is present, pus can be seen between the gums and the teeth.

  • Treating severe periodontitis

    – if the periodontal pockets are deep, Dr. William Lamas may need to use laser surgery to reduce the damage to the bone and remove the infected tissues surrounding the teeth. With laser surgery, Dr. Lamas has the ability to access areas where plaque and tartar have accumulated that are otherwise hard to reach. By reducing the size of the pockets through regenerating the bone and tissue, the bacteria’s stronghold subsides; thus, allowing some of the damage caused by the progressing disease to be repaired.

Periodontal Disease: Treatment Costs

The treatment costs for gum disease depends on the severity of the infection, the extent of the bleeding, degree of gingival recession and X-ray findings. Dental insurance typically covers biannual cleanings and checkups as well as surgical procedures and deep cleaning services that are deemed medically necessary; however, procedures performed for cosmetic reasons are not usually covered.

AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix for a Receding Gumline with Dr. Lamas in Miami

At Lamas Dental Specialists, Dr. William Lamas uses AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix to help repair areas of soft tissue that have sustained damage due to periodontal disease. This form of soft-tissue grafting uses a synthetic material that is constructed using donated human tissue. This tissue stimulates the patient’s own cell regrowth and promotes healing.

Are AlloDerm® Graft Strips Safe?

Yes, AlloDerm® Graft strips are acellular human dermal matrix strips that have been approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for use in surgical procedures. These strips consist of donated human tissue that is carefully screened and gently processed to ensure they are safe for use. AlloDerm® Graft strips have been used in dental procedures since 1997.

AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix, Explained

During a gum grafting procedure with AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix at his office in Miami, Dr. Lamas addresses the recessed gum by covering the roots of the teeth with this revolutionary product; however, AlloDerm’s® Regenerative Tissue does much more than just cover the exposed root, AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix is designed to stimulate the regrowth and revascularization of healthy tissue. This means that eventually the patient will grow new tissue and since this brand-new, healthy tissue has its own blood supply, a patient’s white blood cells can enter these areas to fight off infection. Furthermore, AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix helps prevent the body from rejecting these brand-new cells, greatly reducing the likelihood of a gum graft failure.

A Gum Grafting Procedure in Miami Using AlloDerm’s® Regenerative Tissue Matrix

While performing a gum grafting procedure using AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, Dr. William P. Lamas carefully clears away any infected tissue.

He will then reshape a strip of AlloDerm® in such a way so as to ensure it will fit around and cover any visible roots.

Dr. Lamas will affix the custom-tailored strip over the areas where infected tissue was removed and/or over any other gum-recessed areas of the mouth that are in need of improvement.

The AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix strip typically remains in the mouth for several months: During this time, the body stimulates cells to enter the graft to begin the regeneration and integration process.

Recovering from the AlloDerm® Gum Grafting Procedure

After an AlloDerm® Gum Grafting Procedure, patients should expect to experience some inflammation. In addition, mild bruising may be present.

Dr. William P. Lamas will provide each patient with a list of restrictions based on the extent of his or her gum grafting procedure. Possible restrictions include limiting brushing and flossing near the sites that were treated as well as chewing in other areas of the mouth. In addition, patients may receive prescription medications in the form of antibiotics, mouth rinses and/or pain medications.

The treated areas need time to heal; therefore, it is essential that the patient avoid rubbing these areas with his or her tongue and pulling on the lip to view the surgical sites. Performing these actions could cause an increase in inflammation as well as a delay in the healing process.

To prevent damaging the graft, brushing must be avoided during the early phase of healing (approximately 10 days following the procedure).

The Results

As each person is unique, so is the healing process; therefore, healing times vary from one person to the next.

Directly following an AlloDerm® Gum Grafting Procedure at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, the results will be visible. Once the inflammation subsides, the gums look natural and the AlloDerm® graft is no longer visible. Patients can expect to see a complete maturation of the procedure within three months’ time.

The Benefits of Using the AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix for Treating Gum Recession

When the traditional gum grafting technique is used to treat gum recession, soft tissue is retrieved from the palate (roof) of the patient’s mouth; however, if AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix is used as the soft tissue for the gum grafting procedure, there is no need to retrieve tissue from the patient’s palate.

The Traditional Gum Grafting Procedure

Initially, the traditional gum grafting procedure was the single treatment used for gingival recession. This conventional procedure requires the periodontist to methodically graft tissue to the patient’s gumline. Typically, the donor tissue is obtained from the patient’s palate (i.e., roof of the mouth). This traditional procedure is referred to as a Free Gingival Graft or a Connective-Tissue Graft. If the tissue being used for the graft is obtained from a location near the exposed root being addressed, this is referred to as a Pedicle Graft. This procedure is very similar to the gum grafting procedure with AlloDerm®.

Potential Complications After a Traditional Gum Grafting Procedure

While Traditional Gum Grafting effectively treats receding gums, complications associated with a traditional gum grafting procedure include discomfort and bleeding from the area where donor tissue was collected. Since donor tissue is used, these issues are not of concern when a gum graft is performed using the AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix.

In addition, if the tissue used was attained from an area of the mouth that is not directly next to the teeth/tooth being addressed, the existing gum tissue may not match the other tissue; thus, making the gum graft somewhat visible; however, the same problem is possible when donor tissue is used.

The Pinhole Surgical Technique™ (PST) at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami

Using this technique, Dr. Lamas can address a receding gumline without creating incisions, using stitches or tissue grafts. During a single Pinhole Surgical Technique™ session, Dr. William P. Lamas can address up to 14 teeth: Each session can last from 30 to 60 minutes.

Potential Complications Following Treatment Using the Pinhole Technique™

Since there is no anesthesia used or incisions created during this procedure, there are very few potential complications: These complications are limited to inflammation, infection and gum tenderness.

Receding Gumline Treatment Costs

If the gum recedes and leaves the root of the tooth exposed, sensitivity to hot and/or cold may set in. The number of procedures a patient needs depends on the degree of recession. The cost of treatment for a receding gumline cannot be determined until Dr. William P. Lamas has the ability to examine an individual’s mouth.

If you have receding gums, contact Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami at 305-440-4114 to schedule your initial consultation today. After your examination, Dr. Lamas will know if one of the gum grafting procedures he performs (i.e., the AlloDerm® Gum Grafting Technique, Traditional Gum Grafting, or Pinhole Technique™) is right for you.

Patients Should Check with Their Dental and Medical Insurance Companies Before Gum Grafting Procedure with Dr. William Lamas in Miami

If the periodontal surgery being performed is considered a medical procedure, an individual’s standard health insurance may cover portions of the procedure; therefore, Dr. Lamas encourages his patients to contact both their dental and their health insurance companies prior to their surgical procedure to find out about their specific benefits.

Quality Dental Care from a Compassionate Periodontist and His Team of Professionals

If you notice that your gums are inflamed or bleed easily, you may have gingivitis. If you seek treatment now, Dr. William P. Lamas and his team of dental professionals can help you stop gum disease in its tracks and prevent further damage. However, if your teeth appear longer, gingival recession may already be taking place: Neglecting to seek treatment right away could lead to tooth loss. Please contact Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami today at 305-440-4114 to schedule your initial consultation: Our office is located at 2645 Southwest 37th Avenue, Suite 304 in Miami, Florida.