In the past, only traditional periodontal surgeries like gum flap surgery, gum grafting, crown lengthening, and root planing and scaling were available. Those procedures still have a place, but today you also have the options of laser periodontal surgery and pinhole surgical technique (PST) grafts. Here, we want to focus on PST grafts.
What Are PST Grafts?
A PST graft is not really a “graft” at all, since little if any grafting of soft periodontal tissue actually takes place. Instead, it is a minimally invasive technique whereby roots of teeth are scraped free of encrusted plaque/tartar harbored below the gum line, by means of a tool inserted through a tiny “pinhole” incision. Then, the gums are gently pulled back off the teeth and moved upwards so as to raise a receding gum line, and thus, better protect your teeth going forward.
The PST surgery generally involves very little pain, is extremely low risk, effectively restores your gum line, and costs about the same as many other periodontal treatments. There are specific limitations to eating for several weeks.
PST grafts usually involve no cutting of the gums, but do include a small puncture to start, no sutures (stitches), and little if any bleeding. Plus, the pinhole incision often heals in a few days. . The insertion of collagen strips by your periodontist will help to both stabilize your gums in their new position and stimulate the growth of additional collagen by your body.
The results of PST graft surgery can often last for many years, given a normal level of regular, proper dental care. It is very likely you would only need to have this kind of corrective surgery a single time (and it only takes a few hours at most, usually, to complete.)
When PST Grafts? When A Different Periodontal Treatment?
PST grafts are revolutionary, but they are only for specific periodontal problems. If your gums are receding and you have some plaque built up on your teeth and tooth roots, then the PST approach can probably work well for you just as conventional soft tissue grafts have proven to stand the test of time,
But, in the case of more advanced periodontal deterioration, you may need a traditional type of gum surgery, like gum flap/gum grafting surgery.
In some extreme cases, however, laser periodontal surgery can remove even deep bacterial deposits with very little pain or bleeding, and with relatively quick healing times.
To learn more about the various kinds of periodontal treatments available today, or to schedule a free initial consultation, contact periodontist Dr. Raymond A. Kenzik in Ormond Beach, FL.