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Crown Lengthening (Cosmetic and Functional)

This periodontal procedure is designed to expose more tooth structure prior to restorative and cosmetic dentistry and/or to improve the aesthetics of the existing gum line.

Cosmetic Crown Lengthening

A frequently asked question is whether we can change the aesthetics of a gummy smile because the teeth appear somewhat short. Your teeth can actually be of proper length and simply hidden behind excessive gum tissue. Under these circumstances, a clinical crown lengthening procedure will correct the problem by exposing the shape of your natural teeth.

Clinical crown lengthening can also be performed on single teeth to even your entire gum line and create a more pleasing smile.

Reasons for crown lengthening

Crown lengthening is a functional and common procedure that has many effective uses and benefits.  The majority of patients who have undergone this type of procedure are thrilled with the results.

Some of the more common reasons for crown lengthening are:

  • Restoration of damaged teeth – Periodontal disease can cause severe damage to the teeth, as can trauma and decay.  Where teeth have been broken beneath the gum line, crown lengthening can be used to prepare the area for a new restoration to correct the damaged teeth.
  • Cosmetic uses – Extra gum tissue can make teeth look unnaturally short, and also increase susceptibility to periodontal infections.  Removing excess gum tissue can restore a balanced, healthy look and thus improve the aesthetic appearance of the smile.
  • Dental crowns – Crown lengthening serves to provide more space between the supporting jawbone and dental crown.  This prevents the new crown from damaging gum tissues and bone once it is in place.

Functional Crown Lengthening

If your teeth are decayed, fractured at or below the gum line or have insufficient tooth structure for new crown retention, a clinical crown lengthening procedure may be recommended. This procedure will enable your dentist to perform a restorative and/or cosmetic dental procedure and properly restore a severely broken down tooth.

Procedure

During this procedure excess gum and bone tissue is reshaped to expose more of your nature tooth, which can significantly increase periodontal health. These procedures are one type of periodontal plastic surgery.

Before & After

Crown Lengthening

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