Periodontal flap surgery, also called pocket reduction surgery, is necessary when your gums still have pockets and infection even after we’ve completed a scaling and root planing procedure. Having gum pockets makes it much more difficult to remove plaque and bacteria from your teeth and gums, so it’s important to reduce the pockets.


Why is flap surgery necessary?

Flap surgery removes plaque, which is the sticky film of food and bacteria that forms on your teeth, and tartar, which is hardened and mineralized plaque. The bacteria in plaque and tartar are the source of the infection. Flap surgery also reduces the size of the gum pockets and helps the gum tissue heal and reattach to the bone, making it easier for you to keep the area plaque-free.

If plaque, bacteria, and infection are not removed, the infection will result in the loss of the bone and connective fibers that hold your teeth firmly in place.

The procedure

To begin the procedure, we first make sure all the areas are completely numb. Then we gently separate the gums from the tooth. This creates a flap and gives us access to the infected areas. Next, we remove any plaque and tartar from the root surfaces, smooth irregular surfaces on the bone, and reshape the gumline. When the procedure is complete, we’ll gently close the flap.

Any soreness after surgery can usually be handled well by mild pain medication.

The results

As the gum tissue heals, it tightens more closely around the tooth, and pockets are eliminated. This makes it easier for you to keep your teeth plaque-free.

Periodontal flap surgery is an effective method for treating deep-seated periodontal disease and raising your overall level of health.

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