Gummy Smile Correction
The gum tissue can be very thick and large covering the tooth surface making the teeth look short. This can happen because of medications, bone that extends too close to the surface of the teeth, or inflammation due to gum disease.
A gingivectomy is a periodontal procedure that eliminates excess gum tissue. The term “gingivectomy” is derived from Latin: “gingiva” means gum tissue, “-ectomy” means to remove.
The following are some reasons a gingivectomy might be needed:
Cosmetics: To make the teeth look normal in size when the gum is covering too much of it, making the teeth look longer and more proportional.
Functional/Esthetics: To remove excess gum tissue (gingival overgrowth) that has formed as a result of certain drugs, such as anti-seizure and organ-transplant medications, and certain high blood pressure medications.
Bone and gum health around the teeth: To remove excessive tissue which makes oral home care easier on the patient and assists in eliminating the risk of developing severe periodontal issues in that area.
The Gingivectomy Procedure
Dr. Cavallari will anesthetize the area(s) to be treated. The excess gum tissue is removed either with a scalpel, rotary instrument, or laser. In most cases, no sutures (stitches) are required. The surgical sites will be sore for 24-48 hours and medication will be provided to alleviate any discomfort experienced. A week follow-up appointment is usually needed to monitor proper healing.
Anatomical Crown Exposure
Anatomical crown exposure is performed in an otherwise periodontally healthy area. It is recommended when teeth appear too short, or their gum line is uneven or “gummy.” During an anatomical crown exposure, excess gum tissue and bone will be removed to expose more of the coronal portion of the tooth (the white enamel- covered part of the tooth). It provides correct gingival relation and a more esthetic appearance to the patient’s smile.