Gingival Recontouring: Cosmetic and Therapeutic

Gum recontouring is a procedure where your gumlines (margins) are adjusted against the tooth. It may be that the tissues are interfering with restorative procedures or causing aesthetic concerns. When they do, your dentist can perform a treatment that creates a new margin on the tooth, without detracting from the health of your smile.

Cosmetic Gum Recontouring

Do your teeth look particularly short? Have you ever thought that you had a “gummy” smile, where more gingiva shows than teeth? Is one tooth lopsided compared to its neighbor, simply because the gums are uneven?

If so, then adjusting the shape and length of your gums with recontouring can offer significant results. When you expose more of your white tooth enamel, it helps your smile look fuller, brighter, and healthier. It only takes one appointment!

Therapeutic Gum Recontouring

Sometimes called “crown lengthening,” there are times when we need to shorten the height of your gums for health purposes.

For instance, if you have a tooth that needs a crown but is significantly worn down (where there’s not much visible surface left,) we can reduce the gumlines so that more tooth shows above them. This type of crown lengthening is for restorative purposes, reducing the need for alternatives like tooth extractions.

Another instance when therapeutic gingival contouring is recommended, is for people who have chronic gum disease. We call this type of treatment “pocket reduction.” Essentially, it’s quite similar to crown lengthening. However, it’s done for the purpose of reducing the depth of pocket under your gums, where plaque biofilm and tartar accumulate. By shortening the depth of your periodontal pocket, the area is easier to clean with floss, thus reducing your chances of relapse and tooth loss.

Laser Recontouring

In years past, gum recontouring had to be performed using physically invasive, surgical techniques. Fortunately, that’s not the case anymore. Most Kois dentists incorporate gentle, soft-tissue laser technology which allows them to provide minimally invasive treatments, including gingival contouring.

The best part is that when your dentist performs gum contouring with a laser, the procedure is fast and practically pain free. A little numbing gel may be all that you need. It’s rare that the area needs to be numbed with local anesthetic. But if it does, the numbing effects will gradually go away within a few hours! If for any reason you experience minor irritation, a warm saltwater rinse or ibuprofen is usually all that you need.

Additionally, using lasers for gum recontouring means there’s no need for surgical techniques, sutures, or bandages. The laser gently cauterizes the tissue, so that bleeding and swelling are practically non-existent. So, you’ll be back to your normal diet and routine in no time.

Gum recontouring is just one of the types of treatments possible with dental lasers!

Is Gum Recontouring Right for Me?

Talk to a Kois Center trained dentist in your area to learn more about gingival contouring, treating gummy smiles, crown lengthening, and more. They’ll be able to fully evaluate your individual situation to determine the best course of action for your smile!