Crown lengthening is a common procedure that serves a cosmetic purpose, but it may also be necessary for dental devices and addressing dental health issues. Read on to learn what you need to know about crown lengthening.
What is crown lengthening?
Crown lengthening is an outpatient procedure that is performed using local anesthesia. Anxious patients may be further comforted with a sedative. Crown lengthening involves reshaping of the gums to expose more tooth surface. Some procedures include adjusting bone level, so the tooth gains height or a larger visible surface.
The length of the procedure depends on how many teeth require lengthening, and how much gum tissue requires removal. Generally, crown lengthening procedures take 30 to 60 minutes to complete.
Healing time is relatively short, but you’ll need to be careful with tooth brushing as your gums heal. Most people feel better within one to two weeks.
When is it necessary?
Your Fioritto dentist may have other reasons for suggesting crown lengthening, but these are the most common:
- Add height to teeth: Having a larger tooth surface helps dentists successfully treat dental conditions. Dental appliances and cosmetic procedures are more likely to withstand the test of time if your dentist first performs a crown lengthening procedure.
- Address below-gumline tooth decay: Crown lengthening is often the only way to address tooth decay beneath the gumline. By removing excess gum tissue, your dentist can ensure the decay doesn’t worsen over time.
- Fix below-gumline fractures: If you’re feeling pain and don’t see any chipped teeth, there is a chance that your tooth is cracked or fractured below the gumline. Once detected on x-rays, your dentist can repair the fracture after crown lengthening.
- Crown installation: Your gums need at least 2 millimeters of surface area to properly bond with a crown. When your crown doesn’t have this area, you are more likely to lose the crown or face hygiene issues when food gets trapped in your crown.
- Cosmetic: People with “gummy” smiles often feel self-conscious because their gums show more than their teeth. One way to improve this appearance is a crown lengthening procedure that removes excess tissue and allows your teeth to shine.
Learn more today
Your Fioritto dentist is here to help you make informed decisions, and feel reassured about your dental procedure. Schedule an appointment with Fioritto Family Dental today to check your dental health and to see if crown lengthening will right for you.