What Is Crown Lengthening?
The procedure of crown lengthening may sound confusing to some patients. We are not extending the tooth but are exposing more of the tooth. A patient may need crown lengthening for varying reasons, this can include:
|•||Aesthetic: A patient may have what is termed a "gummy smile," this means that they see bulky gum tissue hanging over their teeth, which can be an unattractive look.
|•||Gum Disease: A factor that comes with excessive gum tissue is places that bacteria can hide. Patients may experience food debris, plaque and bacteria getting stuck or hiding in the folds of gum tissue that hangs over the teeth. Tooth decay and gum disease can be much more prevalent and difficult to avoid.
|•||Decay: A patient who has excessive gum tissue may be hiding decay underneath. Dr. Black may need to remove tissue to gain access to the decay for removal.
|•||Fracture: A patient may have experienced a tooth fracture to a tooth that can not be seen due to overhanging tissue. To strengthen the tooth following a fracture, we need to expose more of the tooth.
|•||Place a Prosthetic: Patients with a gummy smile may not have enough of the tooth available for the placement of a dental crown, a bridge, or a partial denture. Our doctor may need to remove tissue to expose more of the tooth structure to place the prosthetic.|
Crown lengthening is a minimally invasive surgical, dental treatment performed in our office. This process is done is less than one hour. Before surgery, our staff at South Main Dental will ensure that the patient is comfortable. For most patients, this simply means the application of a local anesthetic, though conscious sedation options are available when needed.
Crown lengthening is done by making a series of cuts to the gum tissue. Once numbed, one of the doctors will begin the process by cutting away tiny amounts of tissue, we will want to make the transition from one area to the other natural looking and smooth. Once the tissue is removed, the area is washed with an antibacterial cleanser and the cut tissue is sutured closed. Before leaving, we will review care instructions with you and what to expect in the healing process. We will want you to be aware of any excessive bleeding or signs of infection if these problems do arise, we ask that you seek immediate medical attention at your closest convenience and then contact us.
Healing from the crown lengthening procedure should be fast. Most patients experience very little discomfort and resume regular activities within a day or two. About one week after surgery we may ask to see you again to remove sutures or to check on the progress.
For more information on crown lengthening, and if it is the right procedure for you, contact South Main Dental at our Pontotoc location (662) 586-2311. Our staff is here to assist you.