Oral Anatomy 1 - The Gingivae
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What are the gingivae?
The gums or gingivae are the oral mucosa covering the alveolar bone (which supports the roots of the teeth) and the necks (cervical region) of the teeth.
What main components are the gingivae divided into ?
- The gingivae are divided into two main components.
- The portion lining the lower part of the alveolus is loosely attached to the periosteum via a submucosa and is termed the alveolar mucosa.
It is delineated from the gingiva
(which covers the upper part of the alveolar bone and the necks of the teeth) by a well defined junction called the mucogingival junction
What colour differences are there between the alveolar mucosa and the gingiva?
The alveolar mucosa appears dark red, and the gingiva pale pink.
These colour differences relate to differences in the type of keratinisation and the proximity of the surface of underlying blood vessels. Small blood vessels may be readily seen coursing beneath the alveolar mucosa.
What may the gingiva be further subdivided into?
The gingiva may be further subdivided into the attached gingiva and the free gingiva.
The attached gingiva is firmly bound to the periosteum of the alveolus and to the teeth, and the free gingiva lies unattahced around the cervical region of the tooth.
What is the free gingival groove?
The free gingival groove may be seen between the free and attached gingiva.
This groove corresponds roughly to the floor of the gingival sulcus, which separates the inner surface of the attached gingiva from the enamel itself
What is the gingival sulcus?
The gingival sulcus is an area of potential space between a tooth and the surrounding gingival tissue and is lined by sulcular epithelium.
It separates the inner surface of the attached gingiva from the enamel itself.
What is the gingival margin?
The peak of the free gingiva
What is the sulcular epithelium?
The sulcular epithelium is that epithelium which lines the gingival sulcus.
What is the junctional epithelium
The junctional epithelium (JE) is that epithelium which lies at, and in health also defines, the base of the gingival sulcus. The probing depth of the gingival sulcus is measured by a calibrated periodontal probe.
What is the interdental papilla?
The interdental papilla is the part of the gingiva which fills the space between adjacent teeth.
What is a feature of the attached gingiva?
Its surface stippling. The degree of stippling varies from individual to individual according to age, sex and health of the gingiva. The free gingiva is not stippled.
What is the mucogingival line/junction?
On the lingual surface of the lower jaw, the attached gingiva is sharply differentiated from the alveolar mucosa towards the floor of the mouth by a mucogingival line.
On the palate, however, there is no obvious division between the attached gingiva and the rest of the palatal mucosa as this whole surface is keratinised masticatory mucosa
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