Gum Grafts

Pieter Odendaal is an expert in the treatment of gum recessions. He has performed hundreds of these procedures with great success.


Exposed tooth roots are the result of gum recessions. Gum grafts are used to treat gum recessions. Gum graft surgery will repair the defect and help to prevent additional recession and bone loss.

Gum recessions are sometimes treated by taking gum from the roof (palate) of your mouth. In a minority of cases this still remains the treatment of choice. However, removing gum from your palate creates some discomfort. In the majority of cases we can now use AlloDerm® Regenerative Tissue Matrix (RTM) which enables us to restore your smile without taking tissue from your palate. AlloDerm® RTM provides a natural aesthetic outcome and a predictable alternative to using your own tissue. AlloDerm® RTM is donated human tissue that has been processed to remove all cells. It acts to support for your own tissues and is replaced with your own (regenerative tissue matrix). AlloDerm® RTM is widely used in the medical and dental fields for plastic and reconstructive surgery. Since its introduction in 1994, over one million AlloDerm® RTM grafts have been successfully placed. Donor tissue is extensively screened and tested and then undergoes proprietary procedures to ensure that AlloDerm® RTM is ready for use in patients.


What causes gum recessions?

The most common causes of gum recessions are:

  1. Periodontal disease – Erodes the jaw bone around teeth with subsequent gum recessions
  2. Abnormal tooth position – Teeth that stand out are often not protected by jawbone on the outside and are vulnerable to gums receding
  3. Hereditary thin, fragile or insufficient gum tissue – Vulnerable to trauma and subsequent gum recessions
  4. Overaggressive brushing – Scrubbing that wear away the gum
  5. Eating disorders, from self-induced vomiting – Acid erosion eating away at teeth and gums
  6. Grinding of the teeth (bruxism) – Damages the teeth and supporting jawbone with subsequent gum recessions
  7. Piercings in the lip or tongue – Traumatizing the gum
  8. Orthodontic movement of teeth – Pushing the teeth out of the supporting jawbone.

How do you treat gum recessions?

Treatment starts with addressing the problem which caused the gum recession:

  1. Gum disease – Necessary treatment with dental professional
  2. Abnormal tooth position – Orthodontic treatment to align teeth (if indicated)
  3. Overaggressive brushing – Learning to use the appropriate tools correctly
  4. Eating disorders, from self-induced vomiting – Treatment to address disorder
  5. Grinding of the teeth (bruxism) – An occlusal adjustment (bite adjustment) or bite splint may be recommended
  6. Piercings in the lip or tongue – Not wearing a piercing

Once the cause has been addressed, gum grafting can be performed.

What are the benefits of gum graft surgery?

A gum graft can reduce further recession and bone loss. In some cases, it can cover exposed roots to protect them from decay. This may reduce tooth sensitivity and improve esthetics of your smile. Whether you have a gum graft to improve function or esthetics, patients often receive the benefits of both: a beautiful new smile and improved periodontal health – your keys to smiling, eating and speaking with comfort and confidence.


Before(Two Teeth) After(Two Teeth)
Before(several teeth) After(several teeth)
Before(most teeth) After(most teeth)
Before(upper front teeth) After(immediately after surgery)
After(three weeks after surgery) After (six weeks after surgery)

Dear Inus. Just to say a big big thank you for the temporary crown you did for me last week, you have no idea how much I appreciate it , I shall be able to smile at my son’s wedding instead of grinning !! Many many thanks.

- Barbara

Dear Pieter , Inus , Lisa and Theresa. Thank you all so much for giving me back my smile. What a beautiful set of teeth and a wonderful fit with lots of love and hugs.

- Linda

Thank you so much for giving me the perfect smile and teeth I have always wanted. I shall recommend your excellent work on to my friends.

- Eileen

Dr Ferreira has done an amazing job, I can’t’ thank you enough. The staff and level of treatment and patient care has been outstanding. I would definitely recommend this practice to other people. Thank again.

- Anita
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Opening Hours

Our Periodontics/Prosthodontics opening hours are:

  • Monday - Thursday

    ( 8.30am - 1.00pm and 2.00pm - 5.00pm )
  • Friday 8.30- 3.30

    ( 8.30am - 1.00pm and 2.00pm - 4.00pm )