Gum conditions are the prevalent yet under-diagnosed cause of aesthetic issues in oral health. In most gum conditions, pockets of bacteria affect the gums and damage them, causing the decay of your teeth and exposure of the dental roots. The causative elements in 90% of the conditions are poor dental hygiene and overconsumption of sugary foods, which feed the bacteria and enable them to thrive.
More often than not, patients will have suffered considerable gum damage by the time they decide to seek treatment for the condition.
A cosmetic dentist in Meridian, Idaho may recommend different options to relieve the aesthetic and functional impact of gum disease. Ridge augmentation, gum modification, and crown lengthening are the standard procedures used. The goal of crown lengthening is to increase the portion of your teeth, which remains visible above the gums.
Here are the issues that the procedure can help correct:
Extensive Dental Caries
If your dental cavities extend into the gum line, the dentist will need to lower the gum line to expose the roots. After the exposure, the roots can be treated using antibiotics and other methods. The exposed tooth roots will require reshaping to look good after the cavities have been addressed appropriately. Crown lengthening will help restructure the jawbone around the exposed roots, boost its strength, and make room for the support of your teeth.
Inadequate Tooth Structures for Crown Retention
The part of the teeth found above your gum line is known as a clinical crown. There are times when the crown is too short and inadequate for supporting the dental structure and chewing. In these times, crown lengthening is done to increase the size of the crowns above your gum line. The procedure will also avert repeated crown loosening in the future.
Gingival tissue lines your oral cavity and forms a tight seal around your gums. An excess of this tissue will, however, look like a pinkish ribbon that shadows your teeth and makes your teeth look short. Though it does not affect your chewing and speech ability, a gummy smile will significantly affect your smile’s quality.
In crown lengthening, the gums are pulled back, exposing a larger portion of your teeth and improving your smile. This is the most common indication for crown lengthening and the procedure is at times called a gum lift.
Lack of Adequate Support for Bridges and Crowns
There are times when dental appliances are the ideal options for your oral health condition, but your teeth do not have enough room to support the restorations. In these times, a dentist will recommend crown lengthening before the restoration to increase the room for the procedure. Dental crowns and bridges are the common procedures that might call for crown lengthening.
Crown lengthening for the above issues takes an hour at most and is done under different types of anesthesia. After an adequate portion of teeth is exposed, the treatment site is left to heal for 1-2 weeks. Once healed, you can brush and floss as usual without the adverse effect on the treatment site.