Dental Crown Lengthening in Colorado

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Do you feel that you show an excessive amount of gum when you smile? If so, you certainly aren’t alone. A ‘gummy smile’ a common problem amongst patients and is characterized by teeth that appear undersized due to the presence of an unusually large amount of gum tissue. Although there unlikely to be any risk to your oral health, many people with this problem simply dislike the appearance of their smile. In these instances, it may be possible for you to have a procedure called dental crown lengthening. Although normally performed for cosmetic reasons, crown lengthening can also be recommended where there is not enough visible tooth to support a restorative crown or filling.

Our professional dentistry team is experienced in the art of recontouring the gum tissue so that teeth appear more regular in length and there is less gum on show when you smile. Here is what you need to know about gummy smiles and how we can improve them.

What causes excess gum tissue?

There can be a variety of reasons why someone might have excess gum tissue. Many people find that their smile is genetic and that their parents or grandparents show a great deal of gum when they smile too. However, sometimes teeth may appear gummy due to inflammation caused by periodontal disease. If periodontal disease is the reason for your gummy smile, treating the underlying infection may resolve the problem. Nevertheless, if you naturally have an abundance of gum tissue, we may recommend that you consider dental crown lengthening.

What is dental crown lengthening?

Dental crown lengthening is a fairly straightforward procedure that can be performed under local anesthetic, though it may be possible for you to have sedation if you are particularly nervous. Incisions will be made into the gums so that they can be pulled away from the teeth to expose the tooth roots and jaw bone. In some instances, crown lengthening will simply involve trimming away the excess gum tissue so that more of the teeth are visible. However, it may also be necessary to also remove some bone from around the roots of your teeth.

After the necessary changes have been made, the area will be thoroughly rinsed with sterile salt water to rinse away any bacteria or debris and the gums stitched to close them.

After crown lengthening

Since crown lengthening is a surgical procedure, you should expect your gums to be swollen and sore for a number of days. A diet of soft food is recommended, both for your comfort and to prevent you from accidentally damaging the sutures used to secure your gums. Over the counter pain medications taken regularly should be sufficient to help you manage your post-surgical discomfort. Hot/cold compresses held against your mouth can also help.

It is quite normal to experience a little bleeding from the gums, and your teeth might feel sensitive to hot and cold foods and drinks. This issues usually abate within a few days. You will need to brush your teeth very carefully while your gums are healing, and our team will show you the best way to do this. You may also want to take a few days off of work to recover, particular as you should avoid any physical exertion in the first week of healing since exercise and rigorous activity could cause bleeding to recommence.

If you would like more information about dental crown lengthening, please don’t hesitate to contact our offices where our team are ready and waiting to assist you.

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