Pocket Reduction Surgery

Your bone and gum tissue should fit snugly around your teeth like a turtleneck around your neck. When you have periodontal disease, this supporting tissue and bone is destroyed, forming loose “pockets” around the teeth that are prone to bacterial infiltration and infections. 

Over time, these pockets become deeper, providing a larger space for bacteria to live. As bacteria develop around the teeth, they can accumulate and advance under the gum tissue. The bacteria that live and survive in these deep pockets are different than ones found in a healthy patient. The bacteria cause inflammation of the gums which leads to destruction of the gum tissue and bone supporting the teeth. Eventually, if too much bone is lost, the teeth will need to be extracted.

During your initial exam and at each periodontal re-evaluation we will measure the depth of your pocket(s). A pocket reduction procedure may be recommend to surgically correct the deep pockets. Pocket reduction surgery will re-establish shallow/healthy pockets. Teeth with shallow pockets have a better longevity and can be kept healthy with proper home care and professional maintenance. 

The pocket reduction surgery is a minor day-surgery. In this procedure out doctors gently fold back the gum tissue and removes the disease-causing bacteria and calculus/tartar before securing the tissue into place. In some cases, irregular surfaces of the damaged bone are smoothed to limit areas where disease-causing bacteria can hide. This allows the gum tissue to better reattach to healthy bone.