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Gum Graft

L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
Hello again everyone!

So, this is part one of my "being a grown up and taking care of myself story:" https://www.dentalfearcentral.org/forum/threads/gulp-deep-cleaning-on-tues.28804/

Part two starts today with my trip to the periodontist at my new dentist's office. General dentist jumped in too, found 2 more cavities that the other dentist's office missed. I get those filled on 8/3. They said I could wait if I wanted too but I want to just get them over and done!

Then the periodontist walks in... my gums on my bottom teeth are "paper thin from brushing too hard" and before I can consider any type of of teeth straightening I need a gum graft. Across TEN TEETH. I was honest with him (so proud of myself!!) and told him I have severe anxiety about the thought of him cutting into the roof of my mouth. He said no problem, we can use synthetic. HE ACTUALLY LISTENED TO ME! I wanted to get sedated but the cost was an additional 2k(!!!) so I'll be doing Zanex (1 the night before, one an hour before the procedure). Husband is taking the day off work to take me and pick me up (and hopefully get a nice big early lunch in prior to the procedure).

I have to limit my talking for the next week or so after so I have friends coming up with movie lists for me to watch and I have a list of my own. I have textbooks for my fall classes coming up so I can read those to keep busy and quiet.

Believe it or not, I'm not really nervous (at least not right now... ask me how I'm doing on 8/5!) but I would like some food ideas so I can eat more substantial things than ice cream for a week. Since mine is basically everything but the last tooth on either side of the bottom of my mouth I'm on no chew foods for about a week after. I'm vegan but I can generally modify anything non vegan (and yes, I'm aware the synthetic graft material isn't vegan). I'd also like to hear any tips or tricks you may have for recovery.

Thanks everyone!
 
Enarete

Enarete

Super Moderator
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Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
2,618
Hi leadtheway,

sounds like your visit went really well. You have all reason to be proud of yourselves; sharing your deepest fears with a stranger dentist takes a lot of courage. It gets even better reading that he made you feel heard and offered you an alternative! I am glad you feel at peace now and ready for the procedure.

We have a good list of soft food ideas here:

I just noticed hummus is missing.. so take it as my personal recommendation:)

All the best wishes
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Jul 26, 2017
Messages
2,859
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Minneapolis, MN
I second the hummus.. I ate so much of it after my last few surgeries. It seemed to really fill me and was so delicious :) :love::love::love:
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

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Good point about the hummus - it's now been added!
 
L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
So do you guys just sit with hummus and a spoon and go to town like it's ice cream? 🤪
 
L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
Question (and yes I'm going to ask my periodontist too but this is just so I can start mentally adjusting to the possible prescribed orders): my periodontist mentioned that I needed to be conscious of how much I spoke after the gum graft to not overstretch my mouth. I mentioned that I'm currently studying two foreign languages and he said that would be fine, just limit talking outside of that.

SO.... for how long? Like 2-3 days? A week? The first two weeks until I go back for follow up? What's everyone's experience been with this?
 
Enarete

Enarete

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Hm. This might be a good question for the Ask a Dentist section. A part of it might be about intuition and how comfortable things feel and also how quickly you will heal. I didn't get the point of you being able to speak two foreign languages in your studies but having to limit talking outside of that - was it about lectures that you have to take part in and can't avoid speaking? Or are there languages that are better for gum graft than others? :unsure:


Me, I like a bit of sophistication, so yes, I would use a spoon.

@krlovesherkids777 and @Enarete on the other hand...
:ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:

Should we ever meet up for hummus, we will surely be able to pull ourselves together and use a spoon too :D
 
L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
Hm. This might be a good question for the Ask a Dentist section. A part of it might be about intuition and how comfortable things feel and also how quickly you will heal. I didn't get the point of you being able to speak two foreign languages in your studies but having to limit talking outside of that - was it about lectures that you have to take part in and can't avoid speaking? Or are there languages that are better for gum graft than others? :unsure:
I guess it was his way of saying it's still possible but be mindful of how much I'm speaking for that in order to not overdue? IDK. He didn't ask what languages but for all he knows English could be a foreign language for me. Luckily for me the rest of my classes are online asynchronous format with no scheduled meetings... WHEW!

I went ahead and posted in the Ask a Dentist section.
 
L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
OMG. Someone just told me the average time frame to return to normal eating after any gum graft is 6-8 WEEKS. 😳😳😳😳My post op instructions say "soft food diet for at least two weeks." TWO MONTHS WITH NO VEGGIE BURGERS?!?! Can anyone confirm this timeline?

Please note, still not freaking out about procedure because I've embraced that I need it. I'm not worried about the pain of recovery either... I'm worried about veggie burger withdraw and not being able to speak comfortably/intelligibly for my foreign language classes. Same person said I should just drop the classes. 🙁
 
Enarete

Enarete

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I can't confirm or not, but note that recovery times is a highly individual thing. The experience of one person doesn't mean that yours will be the same. Maybe you're fine after two weeks. Maybe you're not perfectly fine after two weeks but able eat veggie burgers. Maybe you do need six weeks. Our bodies do not have a schedule for this. And, why should be the person "right" and the post op instructions "wrong"? If the instruction say two weeks, then that's a good orientation. Also, your dentist, who has done the procedure many times on many people claims that your classes are ok, so where do the doubts come from? I know this is hard, but maybe sticking to the more positive information and information from your dentist may serve you better than to look for counter evidence. You will always find people who had horrid experiences and some people who had ok experience.. Maybe getting in touch with your practice and get these answers may help to put your mind at ease?
 
L

leadtheway

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2020
Messages
26
Location
Long Beach, CA
I can't confirm or not, but note that recovery times is a highly individual thing. The experience of one person doesn't mean that yours will be the same. Maybe you're fine after two weeks. Maybe you're not perfectly fine after two weeks but able eat veggie burgers. Maybe you do need six weeks. Our bodies do not have a schedule for this. And, why should be the person "right" and the post op instructions "wrong"? If the instruction say two weeks, then that's a good orientation. Also, your dentist, who has done the procedure many times on many people claims that your classes are ok, so where do the doubts come from? I know this is hard, but maybe sticking to the more positive information and information from your dentist may serve you better than to look for counter evidence. You will always find people who had horrid experiences and some people who had ok experience.. Maybe getting in touch with your practice and get these answers may help to put your mind at ease?

I think a lot of it stems from my anxiety disorder (on top of the dental anxiety, lucky me). I get very upset about not knowing what's coming. I hate change and not in the sense that no one really likes change... it sets me on edge and I react... I can't just have my moment of "this sucks" and move on, I forget the name of the official diagnosis but it comes with my anxiety disorder.

So things like this with not knowing what's coming are incredibly hard. I don't know how I'm going to feel for how long and what limits I will actually have (ie maybe I feel fine after 3 days and talking is NBD but maybe it does still hurt for 5 or 6 days). My brain cannot handle that so I seek information and that only winds up freaking me out more. I also really don't like not feeling what I call "100%." I like being able to wake up in the morning and do what I want to do. I hate this idea of having to restrict myself.... I know it's all going to be worth it in the end but it's just so hard to sit here and think "... okay, but for how long??" If I could know on x date I will feel this and be able to do this, it would be so much easier, but that's impossible because everyone does heal differently.

Perhaps the larger issue at the moment is they are now talking about another stay at home order here in SoCal and last time they deemed most dental procedures as "nonessential" and mine was nonessential on that list as I have no preexisting heart conditions. As much as I dislike the unknowns of the recovery, I know I need this done and I don't want to wait and gamble on it getting worse. So I emailed the dentists office to ask about the likelihood of still getting it done... honestly if they called me tomorrow and said "come in now, let's do this" I'd walk there if I had to... I just want to make sure it gets done sooner rather than later.
 
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