Periodontal surgery, sometimes known as pocket elimination, is a minor surgical procedure generally done in the dental office with a local anesthetic. It involves folding the gum back away from the tooth just enough so that a Periodontist can see the tooth root surfaces. Once they are seen, the deep bacterial deposits crusted on the tooth can be removed. In this way, the root surfaces can be made once again acceptable to the body, and the gum can reattach, at least to a degree. Surgical access also makes it possible to graft bone into defects to repair some of the damage. After root preparation, the gum is closed back with sutures and a dressing is often placed to keep the area undisturbed, especially for the first week.

Periodontal surgery is necessary when the tissue around your teeth is unhealthy and cannot be repaired with non-surgical treatment. The two types of surgical treatments most commonly prescribed are Pocket Reduction Procedures (pocket elimination) and Regenerative Procedures.