Request Request an Appointment Forms Download Patient Forms Like UsLike Us on Facebook Reviews Review us on Google
Request an Appointment

Gum Reshaping Treatment in Vienna

Gum reshaping (crown lengthening or gum recontouring) is a surgical procedure that a periodontist in Dr. Ellenbogen’s office performs with a diode laser. The treatment removes a minimal amount of the soft tissue and in some cases, bone to expose more of the tooth surface. As a cosmetic procedure, the dentist uses gum reshaping alone to create a uniform, more attractive smile. However, this treatment can be used in conjunction with other necessary procedures to promote faster healing and reduce treatment times. If you do not like the look and shape of your smile because of excess gum tissue, then you should call Dr. Ellenbogen and talk with him about laser gum reshaping.

What Causes a Gummy Smile?

Though not necessarily unhealthy, those with excessive gum tissue often have the appearance of short, stubby teeth. These problems often stem from genetics, a certain health problem or even some prescription medication. In these cases, Dr. Ellenbogen can simply remove the excess gum tissue to quickly and gently sculpt and shape a more harmonious smile. Sometimes, this problem can stem from poor alignment or jaw development, which are both dental health concerns that require further treatment. Otherwise, the dentist can quickly and efficiently reshape your gums so they are the perfect accent to your beautiful teeth.

Why Is Crown Lengthening Needed for Other Dental Procedures?

There are certain dental procedures that require more exposure of the teeth or underlying bone, like extractions or the placement of dental implants. Some teeth that are not properly exposed often cannot support crowns, veneers or dental fillings so the dentist must first shape the gum before placing the restoration. Another example is when a tooth is broken off at the gum line, and the dentist must remove some gum tissue before restoring or extracting it. Gum reshaping can also be used as part of other periodontal procedures, such as scaling and root planing or pocket reduction.

What is a Crown Lengthening Procedure Like?

Before you undergo the crown lengthening procedure you must consult with a hygienist, dentist, or periodontist. These specialists will check your dental X-rays and medical history and evaluate the current state of your smile before scheduling your gum recontouring appointment. This way he or she can resolve any infections or address oral health concerns that might take priority. During the procedure, the dentist uses a local anesthetic to numb the treatment area. Then Dr. Ellenbogen will use the diode laser to make precise cuts, where the heat from the beam instantly cauterizes the tissue. As the dentist works, he can vaporize tissue and seal it instantly working with precision and reducing any risk of infection. The length of time will depend on the extent of reshaping and how many teeth are undergoing treatment.

What is Crown Lengthening Recovery Like?

After surgery, the affected area of the crown lengthening usually takes about one to three weeks to heal completely. Within a few hours of your crown lengthening procedure, you should use a cold compress on your face to reduce swelling and ease any pain. The dentist might prescribe antibiotics, based on the condition of your gum tissue. Sometimes, the dentist performs crown lengthening and other restorative procedures at the same time, but often, there will be a healing period between appointments.

Fortunately, recovery from laser gum reshaping is far easier than you might think. At first, you might experience some tenderness, swelling, bleeding, and redness. These symptoms should wear off within the first week. During this phase you should try to stick to soft foods and avoid extreme temperatures. After a short time, the discomfort becomes minimal and does not interfere with your regular activities.

The gums of your teeth play a huge part in the esthetic of your smile. If you are unhappy with how they look, talk to our dentist right away!

To schedule your laser gum reshaping procedure, call Dr. Ellenbogen’s office in Vienna, VA at (703) 734-1095 and find out if this surgery is right for you.