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Gum Diseases

Gum graph day 5

07/19/2007

Question:

i went to my dentist yesterday complaining of a bad smell and swelling on one side of the roof of my mouth after gum graph surgury 4 day prior. i also am now experiencing a white/yellow color by the new gum graph sight and redness along with white small like pimples above the gum sight. the dentist said this is all normal and just to stop looking at it or as he put it "playing with it". do i have an infection? i am very worred now. i have read so many other stories about gum graphs on line and i think it might have not taken. i am going asap to the dental office tomarrow, but i need to know if the white/yellow stuff is suppose to fall off or what? there is a string hanging by my tooth on one side. i remember him saying the graph will turn red then yellow then pink. is this right? i noticed the smell on day 4. what is going on?? is the donnor sight suppose to be puffy on day 5? i am still taking 4 advil a day because of the discomfort? is that normal?

Answer:

Puffy structure is normal and will continue for a while.

He is right; the color change will be red (inflammation during first days), then the top layer will become white (depends on the thickness of the tissue).  I am thinking that you had what we call "free gingival graft," which carries the epithelial layer together with connective tissue, and the epithelial layer goes into necrosis after couple of days. A little bad smell is normal, but terrible bad odor is not a good sign.  Your experience with pain should gradually diminish. Every day you should feel better and reduce pain killers. 

Your periodontist is correct.  You generally pull your lips when you try to look at the wound and you may pull the sutures and dislocate the graft, especially during early days. This will destroy newly forming vessels underneath the graft and cause failure. Thus, we generally ask the patient not to play with it.

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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