There are certain times when some of the gum and bone tissue surrounding a tooth needs to be removed so other corrective treatments can occur. For example, the natural tooth may need to be lengthened to make it possible to place a dental crown, or an orthodontist may need to have gum tissue removed so that braces can be placed on teeth that have not erupted. This is known as “functional crown lengthening”.
As a periodontist, Dr. Israelson is a specialist in functional crown lengthening. He provides gentle care and ensures you are comfortable at all times during the procedure.
Are you unhappy with the appearance of your smile because you believe it looks too "gummy"? Many people with excess gum tissue are, so you may be happy to hear that there is an option out there that will make your smile more aesthetically balanced. Crown lengthening can help, as this cosmetic procedure removes extra gum tissue in order to improve the appearance of your smile.
Are You a Candidate for Crown Lengthening?
To be a candidate for gum contouring you will need to have healthy gums and teeth, and you will also need to be living with one of the following issues:
What Happens during Crown Lengthening?
In the past, crown lengthening was performed with a scalpel in order to remove excess gum tissue. Fortunately, advances in dental technology have made the process faster and easier than ever before. A soft tissue laser will be used to gently remove a portion of the gums while sealing the tissue simultaneously in order to promote healing and to stop bleeding. The final result is a smile that instantly appears more balanced, and the entire procedure can be completed in a single visit.
Exposing the Crown to Assist Other Restorative Treatments
For a restorative dental crown to be placed properly, enough of the natural tooth must be exposed so the restoration can be placed without cutting into the gums and causing bleeding, pain or irritation. Dr. Israelson can gently sculpt away any gum and bone tissue needed to provide adequate space for the dental crown to be placed securely.
There are also times when a cavity forms partially or completely below the gumline. Dr. Israelson will adjust the gumline around the tooth so the cavity is exposed and can be effectively treated.
Read about our other procedure, an aesthetic gum lift.
Tooth Exposure for Orthodontics
Certain teeth, such as canines, sometimes fail to erupt (break through the gumline) and move into their proper position on the dental arch. An orthodontist will need to have the crown of such a tooth exposed in order to use orthodontic treatment to bring the tooth into its proper place.
Dr. Israelson gently removes the gum tissue covering the unerupted crown so the orthodontist can attach a bracket to it. Dr. Israelson performs this procedure for both children and adults.