A: Each area of the mouth will heal differently. Some patients have gingiva as thin as a coat of paint which will recede every time dental work is performed in that area revealing some gray metal, while others have gingiva as thick as a throw pillow and will have no recession.
These are referred to as phenotypes: the visible properties of an organism defined by the interaction of genetic determination – including the biotype – and environmental influences. There are three types: Thin, moderate and thick.
Often in patients with high lip lines (Lips that retract in a smile revealing the gumline of the front teeth), we will avoid the implant route to replace a missing front tooth and do a permanent bridge to avoid the possibility of recession and exposure of an unsightly gray line. A bridge anchors a crown to the adjacent teeth and avoids the surgical placement of an implant.
Sometimes dental treatment can be a bit of a “gray area.” (Bad dental joke!)