Crown lengthening is a procedure that exposes more of the tooth structure by removing excess gum tissue and/or bone to create a new gum-to-tooth relationship.
Often it is recommended when more tooth structure is needed for the new crown or bridge to fit properly to the tooth and not become loose. Also, when the crown is far enough away from the bone surrounding the tooth, the gums stay healthy and future irritation and inflammation can be avoided.
The margin of a crown should be cleanable when you brush and floss to prevent decay and gum disease. Some common examples of when crown lengthening would be recommended are when decay develops under an old crown margin or a deep fracture happens below the gum line.
Esthetic enhancements of a “gummy smile” is also another indication for the procedure. Crown lengthening can be performed on a single tooth or multiple teeth.
The technique can be done with a laser or microsurgery techniques. Healing after crown lengthening can vary, but depending on the situation, restorative work can be started as soon as six weeks post-surgery.
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