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The Procedure from Hell

Years ago-- in the last of my teenage years, I bit into a seemingly innocuous kernel of popcorn. It was popped and everything. Delicious as it was, it had a nefarious mission to complete-- sending me on a mission to the most tortuous dental procedure of my life.

If you recall, popcorn has remnants of the original shell still attached to it. These "corn shrapnel" are sharp and rigid. As I was chewing my popcorn, one of these remnants snagged a piece of my lower gumline in the front of my mouth. It hurt, but not that bad-- mostly it just felt strange.

Days later, I got a weird sensation in the lower front front of my mouth, almost like something extra was there. I checked it out in the mirror and to my horror, my gum had receded sharply directly underneath one of my lower teeth-- in the area where that piece of popcorn had snagged!

I went to the dentist, who told me that it was probably nothing to worry about, but that I should see a periodontist-- a gum doctor, so to speak-- to be certain. To this point in my life, I had no idea what a periodontist was, and quite frankly I didn't care.  That all changed, and rapidly so.

I made an appointment with the periodontist and went to see him. I immediately got the same feeling that you might expect at a used car lot-- like you are about to be fooled, big time. I put that feeling aside and started getting examined. The doctor called his nurse and then rapid fire he went through each and every tooth in my mouth with some sort of metal instrument, calling out first the formal tooth number (each tooth in the human mouth has a number assigned to it for dentists to use as a reference), and then a measurement in millimeters, both of which his nurse dutifully jotted down.  I supposed he was measuring the pocket depth of all of my teeth.

Then he sat down and broke the news to me: I needed to have a "gum transplant" to resolve the popcorn-kernel issue. I asked what would happen if I just ignored it, as it didn't hurt. He told me that my tooth would eventually become weaker and weaker (since the root was more exposed), and eventually fall out. The gum transplant or soft tissue graft, was my only option according to him.

He explained the grafting process to me, and I became increasingly nauseous with each passing step. First he said they would cut out a piece of my pallet (the roof of your mouth!), then they would cut open my lower gumline "like a garage door" and apply this now liberated piece of raw flesh to the wound. Then they would "close the garage door" and I would be "all done." By the way, they also needed to do a frenectomy, or a cutting of that little chunk of tissue that connects your gum to the inside of your lips, to allow the surgery to succeed. What a bonus.

Needless to say, this did not sound fun, and I tried every angle to find an answer that would lead me to avoid this procedure-- with no luck. Every time the periodontist would conclude that if I didn't correct this soon, I would lose the tooth. I asked why the graft had to come from my mouth instead of something synthetic, and he offered up a story about how they had tried gum grafts using a product derived from cows, but that the result was unpredictable and further, pointing out that I didn't want to have cow flesh in my mouth for the rest of my life.

In response to my question of how painful the procedure was, he offered up an anecdote of a patient that was having gum transplants performed throughout the whole of his mouth, and how this gentleman would come in once a week, listen to music with headphones while the procedure happened, and walk out no problem-- in other words, it was no big deal. LIES, all of them.

Having no alternative presented to me, I VERY reluctantly agreed to schedule the procedure and walked outside to leave. As I got to my car, I actually was overcome with emotion and I cried a bit-- out of a mix of self-pity, stress, and fear. This procedure sounded horrendous, and even past that, I had just finished healing from a very complicated surgery where both of my jaws were operated on for an unrelated issue just 6 months prior. After that, I thought I was done with dental procedures. Wrong. I sighed, accepted my fate so to speak, and moved on.

The day of the procedure came, and remarkably I had pumped myself up to not be so afraid of it After all, if there was a guy coming in once a week to do this, then I could do this one-shot deal without a problem.

The doctor came by and the procedure began. Numerous needles containing local anesthesia were put out on a tray, and the doctor began injecting my mouth in various spots. "This isn't the worst thing..." I remember thinking to myself.

Then, he pulled out a needle that was not like all the rest. This elephant needle reflected the light in the room. I knew where this was going-- this was for the pallet. Your pallet is rock-hard tissue, and I had wondered how in the world he was going to numb me there if he couldn't given an injection in the area. Wrong again.

He took this horse needle and jammed it into my pallet. It literally felt like I fell face first on a sharpened pencil and it just happened to ram itself into the roof of my mouth. After the initial agony, he started to deliver the anesthesia As he squeezed the needle, I felt an insane pressure building in my pallet as the liquid clearly had no where to go. I couldn't talk, so I grunted in misery and he told me that it was almost over.

He eventually emptied his load, and then began the procedure in earnest... within 5 minutes, he announced that he was done preparing the lower gum, which was much faster than I had anticipated. I had felt nothing during this portion of the procedure, and I literally didn't realize he had done anything besides tug on my lip a little.

So I thought to myself that perhaps this wouldn't be as bad as I had envisioned. WRONG.

The second portion of the procedure was the "harvesting" of the replacement gum tissue from the pallet. Literally, they take a razor blade and shave off (his words) a piece of the pallet, which will purportedly grow back to normal.

Well I saw him take the razor blade out, and I braced myself expecting that the pyschological pain of thinking about what is going on in my mouth would be far worse than the actual pain of the procedure-- given how fast and painlessly he had completed the first part.

As he began cutting, my entire body screamed... I felt it. I figured this was normal, and so I tried to suck it up and deal with it... but as he kept cutting, I kept pulling further and further back in my chair with agony. Finally, I felt the blade go up deep into my pallet and I couldn't cut it anymore. It was the worst pain I have ever experienced in my life, I nearly hit the ceiling, and tears began pouring out of my eyes.

The doctor became extremely alarmed and yelled at me: "You can feel this!?!?" to which I mumbled 'yes.' He frantically called for his nurse to administer more anesthetic to the pallet... and back into the pallet they went with the horse needle, and again with the insane pressure as the drug was released.

He apologized profusely, then said he would return in 5 minutes when the anesthetic had taken effect. He came back, and finished off the procedure without incident. I was seriously in such shock at the pain I had experienced, that I detached for the last portion of the surgery.

But the fun wasn't over...yet. After taking soft tissue from the roof of your mouth and placing it elsewhere, the doctor wants the body to regenerate the missing soft tissue.  What it felt like from the inside was a gigantic, raw crater in the back lower half of the roof of my mouth. So they pack the depression with cotton and then build a wax retainer to keep it in place at all times for two weeks.

This was a huge annoyance, as there was a large foreign object in my mouth at al times. But every now and then it would get shifted out of position by food or talking, and any contact with it would cause me great discomfort-- pain and altered sensation both, so I was happy to have the protection. The front of my mouth-- the recipient of the gum transplant-- only hurt the first few days, but after that was fine. The worst post-op pain were these throbbing pains I would get every now and then where it literally felt like my mouth was regrowing the lost tissue at that very moment.

I went back in two weeks to get the stitches removed, and the doctor said I had a fabulous result. I looked in the mirror, and it looked far from fabulous... there seemed to be a big bulbous protrusion where my old gumline had been replaced by this random part from a distant place in the mouth. But the recession issue that started this all was indeed fixed... and over time the bulbousness dissipated and today, almost 8 years after the fact, I'm glad I had it done and happy to say it looks normal. I still think this surgery is rather barbaric (I've still never felt a worse pain), extremely disruptive and in desperate need of innovation as to solve one problem they create significant, albeit temporary, other ones.

And yes, I'm extremely careful eating popcorn now
VAGreg VAGreg 16-17, M 165 Responses Mar 28, 2006

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I was googling gum craft surgery complications and found this post. For me, the surgery was pretty much painless but it's the continued bleeding that is the issue.

I'm quite jealous of you people who have posted about getting stitches or some protection to the roof of your mouth because I got nothing. Just a note telling I should be careful with eating on the first day. Well it's my sixth night after the surgery and the sixth night I stay awake desperately trying to make this bleeding stop. I already had to visit the dentist because they managed to rip my gumline during the surgery which started bleeding heavily on the evening of the procedure. And on the next day the two craters (I had 2 pieces taken at the same operation) on my palate started bleeding after I drank for the first time. I managed to put an end to that, until on day 3 I got so hungry that I thought it would be ok to finally eat something. A banana milkshake is surely ok? It wasn't. Both holes opened and ever since I've kept tissues in my mouth to make the bleeding stop just to start it all over again everytime I take a glass of water. I've eaten whopping 3 bananas at the course of a week and becoming light-headed, hungry and thirsty.

Currently counting the hours until the dentistry opens because I'm sick of not eating and drinking anything else except my own blood.

If this was bad at all, you had a terrible periodontist. I am 12 years old, and I am extremely queasy to needles and blood. I had this procedure done. The shots are not bad at all, and the actual procedure doesn't hurt at all. The pain afterwards is not at all bad, and I already have a retainer for the roof of my mouth. If this hurt at all, get a different periodontist next time.

Wow, I would say that Ive done this 3 times. The first was with my own palate as the gum donor. This was quite uncomfortable but not the ridiculous scenario the author describes. The second I got both lower quadrants done together with Alloderm. To my surprise, it took well except one tooth. The only drawback was I had to have stitches in my mouth for 3 months. I just went back yesterday, 5 months later to have the one tooth fixed and they took a slice off my upper back gum on the right side and didnt even stitch it. They state that there are limited blood vessels up there and they were right. So far so good, I havent even taken any pain meds. This surgery isnt pleasant. But I agree with others, just make sure you see a PERIO that has great reviews etc. Also, I would advise to go with the Alloderm instead of the the other way, regardless of cost. The palate surgery part sucks, just plain sucks. Period

I am 17 years old and just had this procedure done. Those who are reading this today, do NOT take it to heart because this sounds like what my Periodontist called the "old method." My Periodontist was great. He was very gentle with the Novocain so the discomfort was minimal for the graft site AND the palate. He probed both areas to ensure they were numb before beginning and asked many times if I was okay. I was told that the more common procedure now is to make one incision line in the palate, remove the needed tissue, and stitch the wound shut, so no waxy retainer is needed and there is no open wound. I would highly suggest mentioning this to your Periodontist over the old method because after the bleeding stopped I felt no discomfort whatsoever in my palate. The area where I feel any pain (2 days later) is where the graft site and the frenectomy were.

I am 15 years old and believe me- this procedure is not even that bad. I am incredibly scared of needles and blood and pain, and the experience wasn't bad at all. The needle on the palate of the mouth literally felt like nothing. I could not hear or feel a thing. After the numbness wears off, you are going to feel some pain around the area. But it's not overwhelming, and you'll be perfectly fine.

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STOP! Before you go cry and decide that you'd rather have your teeth fall out, just listen to me for a minute. I just had this done and it's not this bad. I had to get a graft done on my two bottom front teeth due to orthodontia. You should have a periodontist you're comfortable with. My periodontist offered to sedate me and even prescribe Vicodin to me for afterwards. (I found neither necessary) The Novocain shot on top hurt as much as on bottom for me. What we see here, is a person who, unfortunately, has a terrible periodontist. People who have a terrible experience are more likely to post it than those who have a good one. If you look past this post, there are many that will tell you good things.

You described it perfectly. I have had two tissue grafts in the last six months. I have IgA deficiency so it takes even longer to heal. It is the procedure from hell!

I had a Connective Tissue Graft (CTG) yesterday. My periodontist uses the new method of suturing up the upper pallet after removing the harvested connective tissue. She described it as "removing a drawer". The procedure went well yesterday and the only discomfort I experienced was the injection of lidocaine into the upper pallet. Was not too bad, but was the only pain I had. I think the worst part was me visualizing in my mind what she was doing which made me tense. I knew she was cutting, and although I could not feel it, I imagined what it looked like and that made me tense and nervous. Today I feel quite well. I have to go back at some point and have the lower front done. Now I know what the process is like I am not as nervous about going back again for the same procedure.

Man, I am currently healing from this and it is horrible. I just have a raw open wound in the roof of my mouth, no sutures to cover it, no wax retainer. The gauze that was glued to it came off after like 18 hours and now 4 days later I still dying. I've been eating soup and it burns so effing bad I can even describe. I just want to be healed now :***(

I had the surg done,I would not wish it on anyone,my problem is that it has been 7wks and the front lower teeth hurt.I was told the Graf did not take as good as it should have,so you guessed it I have to have another.The teeth hurts with a constant dull hurt.So in 3 wksI get to go thru the pain all over again.Wish I didn't but I guess I have no choice.

I had this done exactly 5 days ago and after reading this and the responses, I am so incredibly grateful for the experience I've had. I chose to be sedated via IV and have zero memory of the procedure whatsoever. The first day was moderately painful, but really not all that bad, especially with the pain killers they gave me. Not even a week later and it really doesn't bother me at all, I just cut my food really small and chew it in the back of my mouth. I go back again in 4 days to have it checked on but overall it's not been too bad!

Hi great story but made me shudder of what you went through. I had a graft taken from my palate a week ago, and like you said the worst pain ever and still is every day with various throbbing pains. Can't eat, drink or talk properly! I think every implant dentist should have this procedure done before they start on their patients, then perhaps they'd realise how painful it really is. Take care. Roger

I FEEL YOUR PAIN!! Now before anyone can call me a baby.. I have had two children with natural child birth, and three years ago had three of my vertebrae fused. I KNOW pain, and just had this same procedure exactly seven days ago. I am miserable! I was lucky in that I had no pain during the procedure, but right now even taking a sip of water feels like "I fell face first into a pencil." As the author put it. This is every bite or sip. I just saw the doc today and he said everything was healing beautifully, and that the pain was just part of the healing process. This crap HURTS! Almost brings me to tears several times a day.

I wonder if someone can help me.

I had 2 implants one of which created a small hole in my gum above the implant. Since that time (over 6 months) the periodontist has been doing tissue grafts, etc. to close the hole in my gum at no cost because the implant caused the hole in the gum.

None of the procedures were successful in that altho the hole was closed; then there was a gap between the gum and the tooth. This last procedure was supposed to be simple! He was going to open a flap in the gum and resuture it to make it tight against the gum. Instead, a buccal fat pad emerged (he said he'd never seen anything like it before) and he had a difficult time trying to stick it under the gum in order to resture. It kept on popping out in different places. During the prodedure he actually consulted an oral surgeon.

Now, I'm healing and 4 days later my cheek is still ridiculously swollen and I've had a lot of pain. Psychologically, I'm at the end of my rope here. I think he should consult with someone else to resolve this problem once and for and and since he created the problem he should pay for the expenses.

I just had this very procedure done except across the length of 3 of my front teeth to fix a 'hole' in the gum from a root canal that didn't heal completely from 2 years ago - I'm currently 32 and a mother of 2. Your recounts of this procedure are very accurate and are still performed the same today. Sorry, to hear the freezing in the palate didn't take initially for you...this procedure is horrible enough without any extra misery. I had this procedure 7 days ago now and the area that received the graph is most uncomfortable and my chin is aching....going in to see the doc today because I have a feeling something is not right - the pain is getting worse in the front area, rather than better! I also can't take any 'pain-killers' due to an underlying health issue and the 'anti-inflammatories' don't help much with the pain. The dressing on the palate fell off on day 3-4 and having that area exposed is making eating/drinking anything most painful/difficult, plus I've had to stop the area from bleeding by applying pressure as recent as last night (took an hour to get it to stop). The dentist/doc told me the same thing about people getting this done 'weekly' and not having any issues with it...so, I had no anxiety or fear about getting it done - I was under the assumption that it would be relatively painless and I would recover quickly. Well, boy was I wrong....and that whole positive attitude thing and mind over matter --- just hasn't panned out for me! lol!

I had the same procedure and am on day 4 of recovery. Can not say that recovery is a walk in the park but am glad I had the procedure done. I had no pain at the time of the surgery as I opted to be sedated. It literally felt like I blinked and the procedure was done. I was prescribed T3's, the mouth rinse and ibuprofen every 4-6hrs for pain management and as long as I don't miss any dosages the pain is not too bad. If I try to go longer without dosing, I have pain that makes me google other peoples experiences as I can not believe the amount of pain I am still experiencing after 4 days. I highly recommend taking a few days off work if you plan to have this procedure. I find the more I talk the worse the pain so try to rest up as much as possible to speed up the recovery.

Sorry mvp83, have to disagree with you. I would not consider the author a baby. At 45 years of age, the 3 gum graft surgeries I've had in the last 1 1/2 years are the second most painful things I've ever experienced, right behind the four hours of my palate splitting in half when I was 17. I've done every other dental procedure without any anesthesia (novocaine - makes me ill), as after the palate splitting incident - to me there has been no other horrendous pain like that and I did it without anything, not even a topical. I've suffered a double concussion and had to have rhinoplastly on my nose because it was shattered, I've given birth. There is nothing - not even pulling a tooth, a root canal - NOTHING like palate pain and gum graft surgery.

And I have a top notch periodontist.

so sorry you had a bad experience.. my procedure went very well.. i felt nothing... but i have to admit that i had nitrous gas while he gave me the injections... my recovery is going well too... soreness where the graft and frenectomy were done.. i have a puddy paste stuck to my palate... no pain there at all...

Had mine done 5 days ago. Procedure was painless except for 4 shots, but aftermath has been rough. Constant throbbing pain for which I am taking 1000mg Tylenol and 600mg ibuprofen together per his instruction, Vicodin did not touch the pain. Still quite swollen with a hard lump there, can't smile or open my mouth much. Really hoping things improve in the next few days, sutures come out in 5 more days. Gently swishing with salt and Rx rinse faithfully and taking penicillin just to be safe.

Wow, I just had (today that is) my entire right side (upper and lower) gum graft done. Aside from the freezing, it was pretty painless. I did however, not have tissue removed from my palate, it was donor tissue as my graft sites were to big to use my own tissue. Maybe this is why I really don't have much pain. The freezing is all out now and aside from some very mild jaw pain (maybe from my mouth being open for a couple of hours), I feel the procedure was a success. Can't wait to actualy see the sites after the bandages are removed in a week. I have to have my left side done as well and would not even hesitate to have it done.

Can I ask How much money out of pocket does this cost after dental insurance?

Hey I am getting my entire right side done this Wednesday. Any suggestions?

I am also getting left side done as well Keri

Your story ... the way you told it... made me laugh. Thanks! And I thought I had it bad, sitting here with ice 3 days later with a swollen and bruised cheek and chin. But nothing bad compared to what you went through.

I just got mine last Friday and everything went amazing! At first I was terrified for my life because my very first dental experience (getting fillings) I had a seizure and went into respitory arrest. Not exactly the best way for your very first fillings/dental work.( it was because they overdosed me on nitrous oxide and before they sat me up they didnt give me 100% oxygen. long story) Anyway they gave me half a dose of triazolam an hour before the gum graft and it didn't even phase me. The periodontist tried to minimize the amount of anesthesia I received because there is also a possible chance I'm sensitive to it. He didn't want to give me a full dose so I was extremely nervous and my blood pressure was high. He talked to me and through out the procedure I was more calm. The procedure was a breeze for me and the most painful part was when they jabbed the needle in my palette. But it wasn't painful like yours. People just have different pain tolerance. Plus he put a strong numbing gel that works amazingly. After the procedure I was just a little sore but that's about it. I'm sorry you had such a terrible experience :(.

I have had the same procedure done and it was no big deal. Maybe things have improved since your experience.

I also had very little pain and no pain meds were needed. I strongly advise searching for a good doctor and asking around before having this procedure. It does sound scary at first, but really was not that bad.

Wow, I've had to have gum grafting when I was 15, after braces. This the graft was taken from my pallet. I had to have a 2nd one done when I was 35. At this time, I had an artificial material used called (alloderm) I think that is what it is called. I was not planning to use this material, but I started bleeding profusely during the procedure and the doctor could not take my own tissue from my pallet. I went for my follow-up and the it did not take. So I had to have it done again. The second time took. The good thing about the graft I had when I was 35, is that I had very little pain, but had donor tissue in my mouth. Today, it looks good. I have another area that looks like it's going to need a graph. So I guess I will get that graft when I'm 40...

You must have had the same periodontist that I had...about 20 years ago! My 9 yr old adopted son went to the dentist today and we were told that he needs a gum transplant for a front tooth which came in in the wrong place. I absolutely will NOT allow my child to undergo this horribly painful procedure, and will keep the appointment with the periodontist ONLY to discuss OTHER OPTIONS....like an implant.

Like the author, my experience with gum transplant was far more excrutiating than the back surgery which I had a few years ago. The periodontist SCREAMED at me and called me names because I had the audacity to pass out from the pain and he had to wait for me to regain consciousness! Also, like you, the tissue graft was hideous and never did heal properly. I'm glad to hear that some of you didn't have quite as horrible experience...but honestly, I'm not going to RISK forcing my child to endure this torture.

Maybe 20 years ago it was torture but I just had one done and it was fine and everyone else on here said there's were fine. Mine hurts minimally and the worst part is I can't have pizza. Just make sure it's a reputable doctor and your child will be fine.

Hmmm...seems a bit dramatic to be honest. I just had the entire right side of my mouth done (top and bottoms grafts for all teeth). It was uncomfortable as I was getting 40 shots for the local anesthetic and some tears came out of my eyes, but aside from that it was fine. My mouth is a bit sore now, but that is what the ice, ibuprofen, and pain meds are for. Compared to the other 5 surgeries I have had this was a piece of cake. Haha. I feel bad for the author of the story above as he is either a huge baby, or had the worst periodontist on the planet.

I had this procedure done 14 days ago. It does not hurt at the time as you are so numb and if you can feel anything then tell the nurse who will numb you more.<br />
I am now on day 14 and still in pain, not an Ouch pain but everytime i eat or drink its like a sting. This is uncomfortable and i am taking painkillers every 6 hours gbut no pain no gain right? Either this or my teeth fall out......<br />
The first few days i was swollen, head throbbed and i could barley eat soup. You should maybe take a couple of days off work, your not eating much and your energy is low so this makes sense but the pain can all be controlled with drugs. At times it has got me down as i just want to eat a huge baguette or pizza but i know in another week i will be back to my old self and have a great smile.<br />
It is well worth it

I had calcium deposits on my gum for more than a year. So today went to dentist, he scaled the teeth and also removed the gum around the lower front teeth. My question is would the gum grow back or do I need to do a gum graft?<br />
<br />
<br />
Thank you.

This story utterly freaked me out...so much so that I almost didn't go get my graft done yesterday. Let me tell you, things must have changed so much since this story was published, or the author had a terrible doctor. The worst part of the entire procedure was the novicaine shots, but even they were bearable. And this huge "elephant needle" doesn't exist. They used the same size needle for everything, then used a different needle to "double numb" me about 20 minutes later once the first round of numbness set in. I felt pressure throughout the surgery and unfortunately, because I read this, I knew exactly what was going on, but had I not, it would not have been scary at all.<br />
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I took my pain meds yesterday and had a shrimp dinner last night. Today, I have minimal pain and am able to eat normally on the right side of my mouth (the left was where the graft was done). The putty is still in place, but when it falls out I know that everything underneath it will be fine. I am not bruised yet, and may be tomorrow morning, but I can handle it if that is my only real symptom. Not being able to brush the left side of my mouth is nasty, but it is understandable.<br />
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PLEASE do not be scared to get this done. I am the biggest blood, needle, and anything surgery-related wimp in the world and this was super manageable. I could have gone back to work on day 2 easily My tolerance for pain is terrible as well. So please don't worry about it. If you need it done, do not hesitate!

I know that this was posted a while back, but I just wanted to say thank you for your positivity!

Interesting reading this, I have just had this down on 3 front teeth near my canines at the top, the op was nearly two hours and my face after 3 days is still swollen, I look hideous and cannot go to work which i need to do after spending so much money! whats worse the soreness and pain in my mouth is relentless, all pain killers are not working, I will never go through this again in a hurray, I have so many engagements to go to this month and cannot go out side as i look hideous. Help!

Wow. That was scary.

I had this procedure done about a month ago. It was no where near as extreme as you describe. It's slightly worse than a root canal, and yes the pain is a little worse after the anesthetic wears off. You should plan on taking an entire day off work and loading up on the pain meds and sleep it off.

Well this was a great thing to read two days before my graft :(

I just had this same precedure done. And it was hell during and now a week later still the pain on the roof of my mouth is just as bad as day 1. Everytime I try to eat or drink its worse and I didn't get any guard for my pallet. The part that was grafted doesn't hurt anymore. The pain medicine that was prescribed to me makes me sick to my stomach so I deal with the mouth pain instead. I'm wondering how much longer............

I don't know what kind of butcher did your work, but I just had the same procedure done and felt almost no pain. The worst part of course being the needle in the pallet which felt like a hard pinch in the roof of my mouth. After that, everything was smooth sailing! Now the hit on the wallet... that hurt...

lucky you my pain is so bad that its making my teeth hurt

Gum tissue grafts can really hurt. Options for nonsurgical treatment of gum disease can be found at www.PeriodontalDisease.us<br />
Paul L Caputo, DDS

I just came across your article and am sorry you had such a terrible experience. For what it's worth, the procedure has improved over the last 4 years, at least in my case, although the method is basically the same. I had this procedure on January 5, 2012 and was also initially very concerned when I learned how it was to be done. My periodontist used small stitches to close the wound on the roof of the mouth instead of the packing, and I still have no pain of the roof of the mouth. He used packing around the stitches at the gum line, but no big deal. The only disconfort was the ***** of the needle when the novacane was injected, but this was minor because a topical anesthetic was first aplied to the area of injections. The periodontist waited at least 20 minutes after the first novacaine injection, and then nummed up the tissue again before starting the surgery. I also got a presc<x>ription for pain medication, but found that Tylenol worked very well. Should you every have to have another procedure, I hope you will have a less traumatic experience - perhaps a different periodontist?

11 days ago, I had a frenectomy and gum grafting done for 6 teeth using tissue from my hard palate. The out of pocket cost was $626 after what insurance covered. Closed my eyes, so I didn't feel/see a thing during the procedure besides tiny pinches from the Novacaine shots.<br />
<br />
Over the course of the entire post-op, I have taken 3 OTC Ibuprofens, one on the first day because my jaw was sore from being open for an hour and 40 min, and two taken prophylactically after reading stories about other peoples' experiences with excruciating, mind-numbing pain.<br />
<br />
I have an extremely low tolerance for pain (I once cried when I woke up with a stiff neck), so I was quite confused when I experienced no pain whatsoever during this past week and a half. Then I realized that the stories that I read were either old (5+ years ago) or unusual cases. The procedure must have gotten better within the past couple of years, because my palate is now almost completely healed (can push on it with my tongue and it feels normal).<br />
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The only thing is, the recuperation is a bit inconvenient because I've been eating probably 6 different variations of noodle soup and congee for the entire time, causing me to lose 7 pounds. My periodontist says that the grafts are looking great and I can start chewing normally in 3 more days.<br />
<br />
Bottom line: After putting it off for 2 years, I'm glad I got it done, and I would recommend using hard palate tissue because it's much cheaper and there's no chance for tissue rejection from an autograft. Don't read old stories about extreme pain. They will make you anxious for no reason.

Huh, odd because I had this surgery done and experienced nothing like this. In fact I read this account prior to my own procedure and was freaked out - wish I had never read it. I felt absolutely nothing during or after, never had any bruising or swelling (and I even opted to go shopping right after surgery instead of going home to ice). I haven't even needed to take a Tylenol. I would actually say I would orefer this orocedure to having my teeth cleaned - it was a total breeze. Only thing I have found that sucks is I am dying for real food instead of mush - god what I wouldn't do for a pepperoni pizza right now - but hey, it'll knock a couple lbs off. To anyone reading this stuff who needs the surgery, IT IS SO NOT AS BAD AS PEOPLE MAKE IT OUT TO BE.

I had both a frenotomy and gum graph to the lower front tooth 32 years ago. Honestly the worse part of the whole surgery was the five needles they gave me in-between the front gum and inner lip area. I did not receive any painful injection to the roof of the mouth, it was pretty painless there. I also only remember feeling pressure, no pain, when they harvested the skin from the roof of my mouth. <br />
<br />
Your experience is NOT the norm. It sounds like you had a doctor who didn't have good injection ability, nor did he even bother to check that you were numb before beginning.<br />
<br />
BTW...I had this done when I was in 9th grade.

Got mine done two days ago. Thankfully tech has changed and I got the one where they take an inside la<x>yer from the top of your mouth, so it's really just like a deflated blister when they're done. It's still got tissue to cover it while it heals inside. He must have gotten all my nerves, cause it's been numb for days = no pain thank God! <br />
<br />
Same with the front, I've been on only an ant-inflammatory drug and didn't feel a speck of pain until this morning when I was laughing :) <br />
<br />
The procedure wasn't even bad. It's just that I had a horrible horrible wisdom tooth experience and that's all I could think about! The nurse asked me if I was really cold because I was shaking so bad! <br />
<br />
But yeah no pain or soreness, nothing. I just can't stand feeling the blood puddle up in the back of my mouth... THAT is horrific.

thats rough

Why didn't you just opt for some gas? Instead of a dentist, I needed to see an oral surgeon to have 3 teeth pulled. This was because there was no tooth left/nothing to "pull". Just a little bit of tooth & then dead roots that kept getting infected. Anyway, the cost (without insurance) was $700. For $75 extra, you could have gas (I got gassed) & for $125, a shot, both of which knock you out. I felt almost nothing. I felt only the 1st, sharp, initial pinprick for the Novocain, but it lasted only a fraction of a second, as I felt myself drifting out of consciousnesses. I was out for 20-30 minutes. I woke up near the end of the procedure, but felt only pressure & not pain while he was digging/scrapping out the last remnants of the roots. 5 minutes later he was done.

my dentist told me I need this surgery, but does it really help? I am worried that after the graft my gum and bone will keep reducing. can you guys advice smth? doctor says "it will be ok"

Yes, it will really help. I was in 9th grade when I had it done. I am now 36 years old, and it is still going strong!

I was just told that I need this procedure done. Ouch. I am trying the oil pulling and Oramd and the cayenne treatments to regrow my gums. No more popcorn and no more flouride toothpaste. Flouride is toxic, it corrodes gums among other things.

I'm now in day ten after having had this surgery. I had a good Periodontist, and opted for laughing gas. I had mild gum recession on the front two lower teeth. The Perio. wanted to harvest a "nice thick" patch of skin from my palate, so he dug it out of the upper left side, near the teeth-line. <br />
<br />
I wore headphones during the procedure, but it was still quite uncomfortable (lots of sticking, scraping and stitching). The whole office procedure took about an hour. I came home and used ice on my lower jaw plus took my pain meds (800mg Ibuprofen, and Vicodin/hydrocodone). <br />
<br />
I also had a plastic "stint" made for the roof of my mouth, but the wires that are affixed to it (to help you get it out) were affecting my bite (my teeth were hitting on the wires), so I opted not to use it (which I now think was a mistake). <br />
<br />
Initially, I didn't have too much pain on the roof of my mouth, but that changed on about the sixth day... that donor site was all inflamed and very tender (and bleeds a little each time I brush). Everything I eat irritates it (even drinking cold water is painful-- room temp water is better). I'm also experiencing a dull toothache in one of my teeth near the donor site (the Perio's office says the Dr. may have nicked a nerve).<br />
<br />
My graft site didn't hurt very much, but unfortunately, the stitches rubbed on my lower lip creating three or four gigantic canker sores. The cankers hurt a lot, and are painful with all different kinds of food/drinks. The Perio. won't let me use anything to numb the cankers except for warm salt-water rinses... which is a little like rubbing salt in an open wound.<br />
<br />
I ended up missing about two and a half days of work due to this surgery. One day was scheduled, the other day and a half were "sick days," where I just couldn't bear the thought of sitting upright all day, in my office, interacting with people. I didn't want to take my Hydrocodone during work hours, but found it to be a necessity.<br />
<br />
I've been drinking a lot of Ensure (as meal replacements), and otherwise, I eat oatmeal for breakfast and cream of chicken soup for dinner. I brush my teeth (being careful to avoid the surgery sites) soon after eating/drinking, then I do the warm salt-water rinses (I'm told the salt water rinses help keep bacteria from building up). <br />
<br />
I feel for everyone who has gone through this procedure. I am happy for those whose experience has been mostly free from pain. I am not a wimp, but this has really been difficult to get through.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I have a receding gum in my lower front and whenver i take in air it feels weird. Yo, this made me cry in fear. Everytime you made a simile explaining how much pain you were in, i imagined going through the same experience. If stabbing a pencil into your hand hurts, this is pure hell. Im soo sorry for what you had gone through. I'm thinking I need this, but i just have a feeling I won't.. but you know how it is. Life is a ***** and you HAVE to tolerate it. By now you, whenever you think about this experience you shake your head, because you know its over with and your lucky. Please pray for me... :( Im only 11.

I just had a very similar procedure done today, two sites graphed and a frenectomy. It was no were near as bad as this author described. Maybe they had a poorly trained periodontist? However, from the desc<x>ription of the procedure and the doctors commentary, everything sounds legit. Perhaps the author has a low pain tolerance or dental procedure anxiety? Also, why on earth did he/she not say anything when they could feel ANYTHING during the procedure??? Novocaine is meant to numb completely, if you can feel anything other than a small sensation it is your responsibility as the patient to speak up and say something; the drug DOES wear off and everyone has slightly different nerve patterns and may need more of the drug in some places than others. My god just say something, don't just sit quietly in agony and blame the doctor or procedure.... The absolute worse thing about this procedure is the recovery. Even if your pain is minimal (which I have heard MOST people's is after the first day) you cant eat anything but soft foods, and on one side of the mouth, for SIX weeks. AND no brushing or flossing in the area! YUCK! But, I am sure once that is over, I will be happy I took care of it. Good luck to all: talk to your doctor, ask questions before hand, consider your pain control/sedation options, plan on a day or two of recovery, oh and save some money cause these procedures are NOT cheap!

As I sit here recovering from my 3rd gum graft surgery in 3 years, I painfully giggled at how you described your procedure because I AGREE! The worst pain ever! I had been knocked out, but I'm on day 3 of recovery, and after last nights gargantuan migraine session, I hope I never have to go through this again! It feels like someone kicked me in the roof of my mouth with a friggin' SWORD! My first two attempts where with Alloderm, but they didn't 'take' (yeah. I learned this AFTER the fact). I wouldn't wish this procedure on my worst enemy, but I love my teeth way too much to see them go to waste. :)

I had this procedure done about 5 days ago. The recovery does suck, as I have not been able to eat anything but liquids for the past 5 days. However, if you are properly frozen, as I was, you feel absolutely nothing. I would suggest that you bring an ipod in with you, that definitely helps to distract you. Sorry to hear your experience wasn't the greatest, but this is by far an exception and no where near the norm.

Thanks for sharing... I feel like I'm going to vomit. I'm scheduled for this procedure in 44 hours. My head hurts, hands are clammy and my belly is twirling. I wanted to learn more about this procedure and why I was a lucky candidate. I concluded that it is more then likely not due to poor hygiene since I'm an avid tooth brusher 6,7,8 times a day, but rather to poor habits. My tooth brushings correlated along with my cigarette habit; one cigarette equaled one tooth brushing. How crazy! If I had 20 free minutes I would breathe one in with nobody the wiser; drop my over coat into the dryer, blow dry the smell out of my hair, wash off my arms and hands, brush teeth, rinse with mouth wash, freshen up lip color, spray hair, grab overcoat out of the dryer, run back into office. Wow! Nuts! On my first visit with the gum specialist she requested that I quit smoking. I quit smoking after 20 plus years. I now brush my teeth twice a day. With less brushing and more oxygen my gums may regenerate new tissue. Surgery in 43.5 hours.

i know the feeling i had this done to me after 2 unrelated surguries in the past 6 months, fortunatly for you the surgeon did the numbing and the cutting, in my case the nurse came in did the numbing to the new site and the wrong side of palate i dont think i need to you where that went

Oh my god! That must have been a horrible experience! I just had a gum graft done a week ago. I was supposed to have a piece of gum harvested from the roof of my mouth but the doctor decided to use a cow membrane instead as he saw that I was very sensitive to pain. Thank god he did! I'm still healing from the operation. Have yet to see how it will look like.

Just came across this post.. I too had this surgery a couple of years ago, and your detailed desc<x>ription is dead-on. I've certainly seen my share of physical pain, but this was by far one of the most painful. The injections, the surgery, and several weeks post-op were all more painful than I imagined they could be.<br />
<br />
The onset of my recession was very acute, and (I believe) due to medicine received after a brief hospital stay for an unrelated issue. The worst part about all of that is that my gums seem to have receded back to their original pre-op levels, so all of that was pretty much for naught.

Feel your pain! Had procedure done monday and its saturday and pain is finally going away. The dentist told me it would feel like I burnt the roof of my mouth eating a piece of pizza, Wrong! I wasn't prepared to take a whole week off of work either but had to. I wasn't given anything to protect the roof of my mouth just some gauze to stop the bleeding. The wax pieces they put in front of my gums to protect the stitches have been jabbing into the inside of my mouth. If this doesn't take I will be devastated. I wish I had read your story and the other comments before my procedure then I would have asked my dentist a lot more questions, lesson learned.

I had this procedure done today. I must say, I laughed till I thought I ripped my stitches out, while reading your post! <br />
<br />
The word I used all day was 'barbaric'! Oral surgeons have been doing this procedure since the 1960's. I said to my dr. "I cannot imagine being the first person to have this procedure'. At least it is a proven technique. There has to be a better way of fixing the receding gum. I had my eyes closed during my time in the chair. I cannot imagine seeing a sharp blade heading toward the soft pallet in my mouth!

I had this procedure done today. I must say, I laughed till I thought I ripped my stitches out! The word I used all day was 'barbaric'! Oral surgeons have been doing this procedure since the 1960's. I said to my dr. "I cannot imagine being the first person to have this procedure'. At least it is a proven technique. There has to be a better way of fixing the receding gum. I had my eyes closed during my time in the chair. I cannot imagine seeing a sharp blade heading toward the soft pallet in my mouth!

Had this done about 7 weeks ago. <br />
<br />
I read this article before I had the procedure, and it freaked me out more than the actual procedure itself.<br />
<br />
It was fairly easy... I had four front teeth done. No pain. Period. Not during, or after. Sometimes, like the 2nd week, it bled uncontrollably and I had to go to the ER, but even that wasn't painful.<br />
<br />
<br />
The only bad part is not being able to eat... I lost 15 lbs as a result. But I needed a diet anyways... who knew oral surgery would help me accomplish my diet plan! ;D

Had this done about 7 weeks ago. <br />
<br />
I read this article before I had the procedure, and it freaked me out more than the actual procedure itself.<br />
<br />
It was fairly easy... I had four front teeth done. No pain. Period. Not during, or after. Sometimes, like the 2nd week, it bled uncontrollably and I had to go to the ER, but even that wasn't painful.<br />
<br />
<br />
The only bad part is not being able to eat... I lost 15 lbs as a result. But I needed a diet anyways... who knew oral surgery would help me accomplish my diet plan! ;D

Had this done about 7 weeks ago. <br />
<br />
I read this article before I had the procedure, and it freaked me out more than the actual procedure itself.<br />
<br />
It was fairly easy... I had four front teeth done. No pain. Period. Not during, or after. Sometimes, like the 2nd week, it bled uncontrollably and I had to go to the ER, but even that wasn't painful.<br />
<br />
<br />
The only bad part is not being able to eat... I lost 15 lbs as a result. But I needed a diet anyways... who knew oral surgery would help me accomplish my diet plan! ;D

I'm now about 30 hours out of the periodontist's chair with three teeth hopefully having a new lease on life. My doctor put two little tablets under my tongue, had the assistant take some impressions, and by the time he was administering novacain I was in "twilight.". That quickly turned to more sleep than awake (he had to yell at me several times to rouse me. So my report is no pain and no real remembrance of the actual procedure. The procedure started at 8am. I was home by noon and slept most of the rest of the day. Only pain medication I've needed is ibuprofen (started with 600 mg, now down to 400 mg. There is definite soreness and swelling and some continuing, but diminishing bleeding. I have a plastic guard they made from the impressions that is protecting my palate.<br />
<br />
Food is scrambled egg whites, soup, and yogurt. Maybe there will be some improvement in that diet within the next 48 hours! <br />
<br />
I sure hope this procedure "takes" and that I don't have to do a repeat, but I also don't want to lose my teeth. I've become attached to them. If you need this procedure, don't be scared away, but do counsel with your doctor. Get another opinion or two. Have them describe the procedure in detail. Look for online and personal recomendations. I also discovered prices are definitely across a broad range. Fortunately for me I'm in a major metro area with several quality and referred periodontists.<br />
<br />
Good luck! And calm your nerves! It's not a walk in the park, but it doesn't have to be torture.

Hey people, you should have been put to sleep to have this done!

your experience is your own but I've done this to two quadrants of my mouth in the last 2 years and on a scale of one to ten, the pain's about a 3 at worst, and that's only when the meds wear off. I think the lack of proper anesthetic is really the worst part of your story, and that's unfortunate.

I had this procedure done a week ago. My only problem was the bleeding. I had to sit in the office for an extra 2 hours because it wouldn't stop. Eventually they sent me home with gauze in my mouth and later that night I puked three times because of all of the blood in my stomach. I fell asleep with the gauze in my mouth and it dried to my wound. I had to soak it with warm water for an hour until the gauze finally came out. And instead of the semi-permanent band-aid they put in your mouth I was given a plastic retainer to use when I eat. I've heard it's much better.

I am a Dental Assitant and the way you explain the procedure as barbaric is insane. The procedure takes less than an hour and 80% of patients that have this done say they feel nothing at all during and the most pain they get is a slight burning sensation, like when you burn your mouth while eating pizza!!! Your stupid for not saying anything to your dentist that you are feeling something (don't forget he's not a mind reader and cannot feel what your feeling) You should never listen to another persons procedure because everyone heals and deals with pain differently.<br />
<br />
Thanks CDAII Samantha

Seeing as how I'll be getting a gum graft tomorrow, I decided to search around to find out more about the living hell that would await me. I came across this wonderful article and for the following 5 minutes, I cringed back the tears as I read on. I've never been tolerant of pain and let alone blood, and was half dead when I got my wisdom teeth removed a couple years back. <br />
Thank you for sharing your torturous experience with us and the only comfort that I'll have now is that the procedure has changed for the better in 2 years. I just know I'll be cycling through every imaginable deities during the horse needle part tomorrow. If all goes well (which I know they won't), I'll come back with the good news tomorrow.

Sorry to hear about your experience. I've had 4 root canals in the last 4 years and I always let my dentist know if I feel any pain so he can add more novacain. I'm sure you know to do the same now.

It's not that bad. I have had it three times.

Bro! You need to see my oral surgeon! I had a boatload of dental procedures today, beginning at noon, and including a gum graft on two lower left molars. It is 8:19 and I have yet to feel the first stabbing pain or throb. It may be coming, but my experience was MUCH less unpleasant as yours. In fact, I can honestly say it was nothing. Proper numbing is the key. <br />
<br />
Let me know if you ever need a referral. BTD is awesome!

OH<br />
MY <br />
GOD!!!

Very scary and I am about to get this procedure done and two weeks!!!!!!!!!

I had gum graftind done yesterday, and I'm happy to report I was sedated so it felt like I just fell asleep before they started and woke up to find out that they are messing about in my mouth - I thought it only just started, but they just wrapped things up and took that instrument that keeps your mouth open out (that was the only thing I could feel and I didn't like it).<br />
I've had it done over 8 of my front upper teeth - so now with the swelling that goes from my top lip all the way to my eyes - I look like some kind of a monkey.<br />
I am not sure about what they have used on what and I'm not sure I want to know. the front roof of my mouth is swolen as well so its possible they used it but I can't feel exposed flesh and there is nothing else in my mouth except for stitches.<br />
<br />
Had it done as a preceding step to getting my implants to having crowns. the gum receded over the botom of the implant and so piercing through it to put a crown on would have exposed the whole implant probably - also because my top teeth are mostly missing - bone has gone thin and needed gums to provide extra la<x>yer of strength to the area.<br />
<br />
I just cant' believe the price of it. £1100 for just that. cutting and mixing a bit of flesh for an hour.<br />
hopefully it all goes well - can only have liquidised food and can't stand the thought of eating much anyway.

Gum grafts are not a lot of fun, but really other than the requiring extra numbing (and this happens on occasion, and sounds as though it was done), really the only thing that was so "scary" about this procedure was how freaked out you seemed to be from the beginning. You went in being terrified and it colored everything about how you told the story from start to finish. It sounds, though, like most of the procedure compared to what most grafts really are, was pretty uneventful. I had to go through a series where the person didn't know what he was doing, and so they kept falling off, and so had to go through them nearly 10x before the graft took. But everything else about your experience sounds exactly like a gum graft, and in the end it saved your tissues, healed okay, and saved your tooth. I'm sure I'm partly desensitized because I've had to go through about 30 equally crappy dental procedures, and over half of them were from actual dental incompetence. It's hard for me to understand though, how a dental procedure that actually went well and had such a good outcome could be seen as a "procedure from hell". I'd hate to see people avoid dental procedures that they really need because of overblown statements like that.

Wow, what a horrible experience. I just had my surgery yesterday- along 4 front lower teeth, and other than one stinging injection in the front, it was pain free. I believe she injected me in at least 6 to 8 sites. I only felt the first two. I want to be sure that others do not refuse this surgery if they need it due to your experience though: because exteme recession in the front lower gums can affect the anestetic from fully numbing you. I know this because I had some much recession that after my perio checked me to make sure I could feel NOTHING ( after the injections) she said that is good because she said sometimes with that much recssion it doesnt fully numb. I had a horrible experience some years ago with a root planing. I too made the horrible mistake of toughing it out. I learned the hard way that you must communicate your every sensation with your dentist/dr so they can do their job properly. There is alot they can do to make you more comfortable. Sometimes just the sounds they are making make my heart race, so they gave me valium first. You see, I really am a hysterical in the chair- they probably groan before I come in- but they take very good care of me. About my gum graft- I took vicodin last night, some pressure and swelling at my front teeth but feel fine other than that. Yesterday somewhat uncomfortable, had to use the tea bags, but this am marked improvement. My crowns and root planing caused much more pain than this did. It is more inconvenient (lots of oral care- no talking) than anything.

I just had my stiches out today and the dentist said everything looked beautiful. Boy am I happy!<br />
It is a difficult first week. Be prepared to sleep a lot and only eat soft or liquid food. Use a Vita Mix<br />
to blend up cooked veg and soups. Don't talk, as it disturbs the stiches. Take your pain med<br />
with you to take on the way home. It hurts a lot right after the procedure. My pain got better<br />
as days went by, but definitely rest and take naps. Best if you can sleep through the first 48 hrs.<br />
I used the slippery inside of aloe vera plants on the roof of my mouth and it really helped. For<br />
healing and pain. Amazing. Very soft and soothing too. Tastes kind of icky, but... I hope it comes<br />
out well. Good luck, you'll get through it, but it is uncomfortable and inconvenient.

i still have the stitches in from this procedure and trust me its nothing like this story tells! yes its extreme and could be painful but im doing perfectly fine (although i cant chow down on the foods i love) this story is a bit over dramatic and kinda scary! im glad i read this after my procedure and not before! can we say DRAMA QUEEN!!!!

hey. I feel sorry for your experience, but you could avoid it just simple asked for general anesthesia and cadaver gum graft. firstly- you feel nothing and secondly no one is shaving your palate:)

I have to go in and get examined because my gum is receding on one of my bottom teeth. The muscle connecting my lip to my gums is actually pulling it down. So I have to get that removed as well as a gum graft. I am so terrified of the procedure. I hope to god I can find a way to avoid it. I have been brought to tears in fear of this article.

Wow, that's awful! I've had three gum grafts now (the third one was just three days ago) and none have been that bad. They always give me a couple extra strenght tylenol before getting started and then I get to inhale gas and get high before they numb me up and throughout the procedure. My dentist is always really careful about not letting me see the tools he uses as well so that helps. I think the worst part is usually the first day after the numbness wears off, but I just take pain killers and try not to talk to much as that seems to make it worse. This time the packing fell off the roof of my mouth after like 30 hours, so it's pretty painful and I'm having to be really careful about what I eat. I think I'll call tomorrow about getting it coverd up again just until it heals a little more. <br />
For anyone who has to have a gum graft and is now really scared about it, just know that this persons experience is on the extreme side. I had my first one done when I was like 14 and it really wasn't a big deal at all.

ahhh! I am getting this done next week and am soo scared! They prescribed me two valium to take before the procedure, so it must be horrific!!

im 14 and ive already had this done 4 times across all my lower and upper jaw, stop being a little ***** and suck it up

It sounds like your experience would have been fine if you had asked for extra anesthetic when it became clear you still had feeling in the roof of your mouth. Anyways it's good that you had the procedure done since it's true that your tooth is more likely to fall out if your gumline has receded so quickly.