A Gum Lift or Crown Lengthening procedure is commonly used to treat ‘Gummy Smiles’. When someone smiles and a lot of gum is visible above the top teeth or when the top front teeth appear short and square, you are said to have a ‘gummy smile’.
A Gum Lift can be performed to remove excess gum and expose more of the natural ‘hidden’ white tooth material / enamel. Removing the excess gum and reshaping of the gum line to create a symmetrical gumline (zenith) can give a fuller, more aesthetically pleasing smile, in most cases giving you a younger and more youthful appearance.
A Gum Lift is sometimes described as a ‘crown lengthening’ procedure. Dentists often refer to the treatment as ‘crown lengthening’ when it is performed in a non aesthetic zone for functional and gum health purposes. A small amount of gum and occasionally some underlying bone is carefully and gently removed from around a tooth, resulting in a longer looking tooth. This procedure may also be recommended before a tooth is prepared for a crown. If the tooth is too short or the tooth has filling material that lies below the gumline, the removal of a small amount of gum can significantly improve the success and longevity of dental treatments, such as tooth crowning.
The procedure is minimally invasive with almost no postoperative discomfort.
On the first visit, a little anaesthetic is given to numb the area and a small amount of gum is removed from around the tooth. A few small sutures and a dressing may be placed around the tooth / teeth to protect it during the initial healing period. A week later a short return visit is arranged to review the healing and remove any sutures and dressing material that may have been placed.
A period of two to three months is generally required for continued healing and gum maturation before the tooth can be prepared for its final restoration.