Esthetic Crown Lengthening
Esthetic crown lengthening is a dental surgical procedure meant for re-shaping the gums in order to balance the patient’s smile and make it more pleasing and artistic. The procedure is similar to conventional crown lengthening except that its major goal is to establish aesthetic gingival contours while exposing the complete crown of the tooth.
Actually, the conventional crown lengthening procedure is meant for removing excess gum tissue and sometimes bone in order to expose more of the natural tooth structure. On the other hand, the esthetic crown lengthening makes the entire process more pleasing, balanced and artistic.
In the recent times, aesthetic considerations have influenced the management of dental maladies in varying degrees. These days, esthetic crown lengthening employs gingival tissue reduction with or without osseous surgery for tooth exposure.
Reasons for esthetic crown lengthening
There are valid reasons for initiating esthetic crown lengthening. A common esthetic problem often experienced by many people is excessive gingival display or “Gummy Smile”. Esthetic crown lengthening can be used to remove or reduce the excess gum tissues through planned incisions that often produce satisfactory esthetic results. It can also be used to reduce excess bone that covers the teeth with the view of creating a better smile. The procedure can be engaged to lengthen the tooth and make it look more balanced. It can equally be used to restore a broken or decayed tooth that shifts from the gum line.
Esthetic crown lengthening can be carried out under a local anesthetic whereby small amount of gum tissue is removed through laser treatment or gum lifts. Both methods (gum lifts & laser therapy) are used often used for crown lightening. Normally, the length of treatment depends on the amount of gum tissue or bone to be removed, reshaped or reduced.
Reshaping gum tissue is usually a quick procedure especially when laser treatment is engaged. The process seals any small blood vessels found so there is no need for sutures and discomfort or swelling. On the other hand, the treatment is likely to be a little longer where there is the need to remove the gum tissue or bone. The dental surgeon may prescribe some painkillers and a Chlorhexidine mouth rinse, depending on the extent of surgery. The patient may also be placed on a soft diet for the first few days, until the treated area heals.
Essentially, esthetic crown lengthening encompasses one or a combination of the following: gingival repositioning, gingival resection; and/or osseous resection. The surgical procedure is generally associated with low pain and the results are long lasting.
There may be other new procedures used in esthetic crown lengthening. Some dental professionals are coming up with new discoveries and recommendations in that regard.
Most crown lengthening treatments are extremely straightforward and patients typically experience little postoperative discomfort. Once the gum tissue has fully healed, the patient should be able to see the new shape of the gum tissue.
If the patient needs new crowns following the lengthening procedure, he or she may wait for some weeks before the crowns can be made. This is because the gum tissue shrinks slightly during healing process. Hence it is important that the margin of the crown is placed slightly below the new gum level to give good oral and aesthetic results. If the crown is placed too soon then the gum tissue might shrink back too much and the edge of the crown will be visible.
There are unique benefits that come with Esthetic crown lengthening.Among them include:
- Enhanced cosmetic appearance of the teeth
- Correction of uneven gum contours
- Harmonious smile
- Confident smile and talk
- Short healing period
- Little discomfort all through the treatment period
- Quick results seen once the excess gum tissue is removed
- Gum health improvement
- Risk of periodontal disease reduced
- Risk of tooth decay reduced