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HELP ASAP! GUM GRAFT surgery next week!!!



Junior member
Jun 29, 2020
IMG_20200629_143427852.jpgHello, this is my first post here and idk what I'm doing but I really need advice and I found this place.

(This will probably be a very long post but I need to get this all out. I hope it doesn't deter any responses. And sorry for so many questions I'm just super nervous.)

So about a month ago I saw a periodontist that I was referred to by my dentist concerning my gum recession on my four front bottom teeth and possible gum graft surgery. I've had the recession for four years now. I'd say it's remained unchanged probably for the last two years, I haven't really noticed it getting worse or anything. I don't even think I HAVE to get this surgery, at least not anytime soon, because the dentist told me there is hardly any tooth decay. I take pretty OK care of my teeth, I brush at least once every day, I floss now and then, I don't smoke, I don't eat much candy or drink much soda. The recession has never even bothered me or caused me any sensitivity. Most of the time I forget I even have it.

But apparently I do need the surgery now. I was told I'd need a gum graft on my four bottom front teeth. They'll be harvesting the tissue straight from the roof of my mouth. This will happen July 8th, next Wednesday, so really not far from now.

To get to the point, I'm only 16 and I have never had any kind of surgery ever before, and I'm absolutely terrified. I've been thinking about it every day and it's even been keeping me up at night.

My friends and family keep telling me not to worry and that it will be fine, but they have never had the surgery done, and they haven't been doing any research into it. I'm the only one looking into it, and they think I'm overreacting because they don't understand what the procedure and healing process fully entails. They won't listen to me when I try to talk to them about it. I really need people who can understand and listen to me.

I would like to know more from people who have been through the procedure and experienced it first hand. I'd prefer it to be from people who used the tissue from their own palate and not donor/cadaver tissue, and who had it done for multiple teeth. Please be honest and don't sugarcoat anything to make me feel better. I want to know what to expect.

The following is some more info and questions I have. If you have anything to add that could be useful, please do! It is hard to come up with all of my questions at the top of my head, but these are just my main concerns.

For the procedure I will be getting local anesthesia, novocain and nitrous. Beforehand I'll be given anti anxiety meds and a sedative, Halcion, that will make me very loopy and forgetful, but I don't know if that will be enough. I wanted to be totally knocked the frick out, unconscious, but my doctor doesn't do that. I've had Novocaine before for getting baby teeth pulled and for some drillings, and it was really effective, so I'm not really worried about pain during the surgery, but the idea of sitting there awake while they're cutting me open, even if I don't feel anything, just knowing what they're doing is enough to make me sick. What is it like not being put under? Is it as bad as I think it is? Did you take Halcion or any similar sedative? How "out-of-it" does it make you?

The appointment is 1 hour 30 minutes but that includes prep time and after time. I want to know how long the actual procedure (where they're actually in my mouth operating on me) generally is?

Roughly how much longer after the procedure is finished until the numbing wears off and the pain kicks in?

I'd like to know in general, how bad is the after pain? Is it manageable? Or is it agonizing? Does it feel fine if you take meds? Some sort of comparison would be helpful.

How long does the pain last? Is the first day the worst and it gets better as the days go by? Is it just a week of hell?

How long do I have to wear the stent?

How long does it take for the palate and the graft to heal?

When can I eat, brush, and floss normally?

Will having a stent, applying ice, and taking lots of antibiotics and anti inflammatory meds and pain meds be enough to significantly reduce pain and increase the healing process?

What are the best pain medications to take? I was told to just take 600mg of Ibuprofen and maybe some Tylenol. I don't think that is enough. Has anyone else just taken these and been fine or did you need heavier pain meds?

Are there any more recovery tips you recommend to speed up the healing process or ease it in any way other than the aforementioned stent, mouth wash, ice, antibiotics, and whatnot?

Do the antibiotics make you feel nauseous/sick?

How long should I take the antibiotics?

Does eating, swallowing, drinking, and mouthwash hurt?

How long until I can brush and floss again?

For how long will my mouth be swollen?

How much does it bleed afterwards?

Do they cover the wound with something? Or do they just leave it to clot on its own? Can it open back up on its own? If so, what do I do?

Will my mouth feel normal again eventually, meaning the gums on my front teeth will feel totally normal and my palate will be fully healed?

How will I know if the graft has been rejected?

How much weight should I expect to lose?

What are some foods that I should eat? I've never been on an all-soft food diet before.

Other than just answering my questions I would also like to hear your personal story/experience and what you thought about it all and how it turned out, if it was worth it, etc.

Thanks it means a lot :)

P.S. maybe I will post an update after the surgery if you'd like


Staff member
Verified dentist
Oct 25, 2005
I'm not being rude, but a lot of these questions would be better put to the dentist who is doing the treatment, they'll know your case a lot better than anyone online and should be able to give you better answers. If they don't answer to your satisfaction, then ask again till they do :) You could e-mail them if you don't want to talk to them.