Oral Surgery

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars that emerge, usually during your late teens to early twenties. For some people the wisdom teeth emerge through the gums and have enough room to grow in naturally. For others, wisdom teeth often cause problems as they are trying to protrude through the gums. When a wisdom tooth is impacted the tooth is coming in at an angle and not straight through the gum line. This can cause pain, the tooth can come in unevenly, or the tooth may only emerge partially.

Impacted wisdom teeth can cause structural damage to the jaw and other teeth. They can also provide a place for bacteria to gather since they are hard to reach and clean. These potential problems make it necessary to remove impacted wisdom teeth so that larger problems do not arise. Routine x-rays during a dental exam can reveal if you will need to have your wisdom teeth removed.

Bone Grafting

Bone grafting is where the jawbone is built up to accommodate a dental implant or other restorative device. Bone grafting is a common procedure that is used frequently for dental implants and other periodontal procedures. The bone used to graph is taken from a sample from the patient. Many times, the bone is taken from another area of the mouth when drilling takes place. The bone fragments are suctioned from the mouth and used for the graft. Cadavers bone fragments are also used. They are harvested by bone banks and are a very safe source for bone donation.

Gingival / Gum Grafting

Gum grafting is the corrective procedure that restores the gum to its natural, healthy state. Using soft gum tissue from the roof of the mouth, the receded gums are grafted. The goal if the graft is to cover exposed tooth and root surfaces with grafted on oral tissue. This grafting encourages new tissue growth that will enable the gums to return to its original position around the teeth. The procedure is routine and entails a minimal amount of downtime and discomfort.


A frenulum is a piece of tissue that prevents an organ from moving. There is a frenulum that attaches your upper lip to the gums, while another connects the lower lip to the gums. A frenulum that is too short or thick, will cause problems in speech patterns and tooth misalignment. In infants, a shortened frenulum underneath the tongue will inhibit breastfeeding. When the frenulum disrupts movement, growth, or development, corrective action is necessary to resolve the situation.

A frenectomy is a minor surgical procedure that is performed in your dentist’s office. It can be performed with either a scalpel or laser and takes less than 15 minutes. Using a laser causes very little bleeding and does not require stitches. A laser also results in less postoperative discomfort and a shorter healing time. Young children and infants are put under general anesthesia for the procedure and adults have the procedure performed using local anesthesia. If your child needs a frenectomy, there is nothing to worry about. The procedure is very successful and causes minimal discomfort.

Gingivoplasty / Crown Lengthening

It is no secret that dentists are committed to saving teeth. This is why we fill a cavity, instead of pulling the tooth.

Cavities can decay to tooth to the point where restoration is virtually impossible without a procedure called crown lengthening. Crown lengthening is a routine surgical procedure, which remodels the contour of the gum line. The procedure does not actually lengthen the crown, but rather lowers the gum line. When there is not enough tooth structure to affix a crown, this is the only option. Sometimes a tooth has been broken below the gum line. In this instance, crown lengthening is very successful in exposing more of the tooth, so that the dentist has something to work with.

These procedures are also done for cosmetic purposes. Cosmetic periodontal surgery sculpts the gum line so that it is even and in proportion to the amount of exposed tooth. If you have a gummy smile, uneven gum line or elongated teeth, cosmetic periodontal surgery may be able to help.

Our Dental Services

If you are looking for a reliable Chevy Chase, Maryland dentist, consider our experienced staff and dental services.

Composite Fillings

Both scientific studies and clinical experience have shown that tooth-...

Read More

Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are the traditional way to replace missing teeth and av...

Read More

Dental Crowns

Crowns (Dental Caps) are a way of increasing the structural integrity ...

Read More

Dental Hygiene

While at our dental office, our friendly staff makes sure that you rec...

Read More

Dental Implants

Traditional Dental Implants Typically dental implants are the most nat...

Read More


Dentures are one method for replacing missing teeth. Dentures are comm...

Read More

Invisalign ®

Invisalign® is the revolutionary clear way of achieving all the be...

Read More

Night Guards

Many people are afflicted with bruxism, or teeth grinding. Some people...

Read More

Oral Surgery

Wisdom Teeth Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars that e...

Read More

Mini Dental Implants

Mini dental implants are about half the size in diameter of regular de...

Read More

Periodontic Services

Periodontal (Gum) Disease Periodontal (gum) disease is insidious. It i...

Read More

Preventive Dentistry

Many people wait until they’re experiencing tooth pain to go to ...

Read More

Protective Mouth Guards

Mouth guards are an essential piece of equipment in contact sports. Th...

Read More

Root Canal (Endodontics)

Endodontics deals with the tissue inside the teeth. If the tissue insi...

Read More

Teeth Whitening

Many people associate professional teeth whitening with movie stars an...

Read More


TMJ is the acronym for temporomandibular joint, which connects your lo...

Read More


Veneers are an excellent way to redesign and reshape your entire mouth...

Read More

H. Brandt Foster DDS • Comprehensive Contemporary Dentistry
4702 Chevy Chase Drive, Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815 • 301-986-8804
© 2013