Woman in dentist chair receiving crown lengtheningAt Haid Dental, we offer crown lengthening procedures to improve the health of your gum tissue, to fix a “gummy” smile in which the teeth are covered by excess gum tissue, or to prepare your mouth for restorative or cosmetic treatments. This process exposes more of the natural tooth by changing the shape of the natural bone and gum tissue. We can perform this procedure on a single tooth or on your entire gum line, creating a personalized experience for each individual patient. 

Why would I need crown lengthening?

Crown lengthening can either solve restorative or cosmetic issues or prepare your mouth for other procedures. The main reasons to undergo crown lengthening are restoration of damaged teeth from periodontal disease, preparing the mouth to receive a dental crown, or correcting cosmetic issues with the teeth. Periodontal disease can damage the teeth under the gums, causing them to crack or decay. Crown lengthening can help expose the damaged part of the tooth so it can be fixed by your dentist. When receiving a dental crown, extra space around the tooth needs to be made so the crown will fit comfortably and won’t feel too big in your mouth. Crown lengthening can create some of the space needed to set a dental crown. Finally, when excess gum tissue covers the teeth, it can cause the teeth to appear unnaturally short. Crown lengthening can expose more of the natural tooth, allowing you to show off those pearly whites.

What is the process of crown lengthening?

Local anesthetic is normally administered to keep you comfortable during the crown lengthening process. The duration of the procedure will be determined by how many teeth are involved and if any amount of bone needs to be removed along with the soft tissue. If you have existing dental crowns, these will be removed before the procedure and replaced immediately afterwards. To begin, your dentist will separate the gums from the teeth by making small incisions around your soft tissue. Even if only one tooth is part of the process, the teeth immediately to its sides will also be treated so the end look is more natural. By separating the gums from the teeth, the dentist will be able to have access to the root of the tooth, which will help with any future restorative procedures. Next, a small amount of tissue will be removed, and potentially a small amount of bone, depending on the needs of your teeth. Following the procedure, you will be provided with a surgical bandage to protect the area, a prescription for pain management, and a mouth rinse to clear any bacteria away from the site of the procedure. Your gums will fully heal within 2-3 months.

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