If your gums rest too low or too high on your teeth and you are unhappy with your smile, you may be a candidate for gum contouring surgery. Also called gum reshaping or tissue sculpting, this cosmetic dental procedure can even out an uneven gum line and give you a smile you can be proud of.
What Is Laser Gum Reshaping Treatment?
Laser gum reshaping, or contouring, is a cosmetic dental treatment. Laser gum reshaping is used to correct the gum line by removing excess tissue and creating an even gum line. Traditionally, gum shaping was performed with a scalpel, which was painful and associated with a long recovery time. Fortunately, with modern dental technology, dentists can replace the scalpel with dental lasers. Dental lasers are far less painful and they cauterize as they cut, which leads to both a quicker healing time and reduces the risk of infection.
The laser gum reshaping treatment begins with the application of a numbing solution to the gums for patient comfort. Once the gums are anesthetized, a dental laser is applied to remove extra gum tissue. The gum line is carefully reshaped to create an even appearance.
What Causes Uneven Gums?
A number of things can cause your gums to be too low or too high. Gums that cover a large portion of your teeth can make your teeth look small. This may be the result of genetics, a particular health problem, or taking certain prescription drugs.
Gums that are too high and make your teeth appear long are often caused by gum recession, a condition in which gum tissue pulls back from a tooth and exposes the tooth’s root. Not only can gum recession make your teeth look long, it can lead to serious dental problems such as decay and tooth loss. Gum recession may also be a sign of periodontal disease, the deterioration of the supporting structures of the teeth (gums and bone).
Is Gum Contouring Surgery Necessary?
The primary objective of gum contouring is improving aesthetics. Healthy teeth and gums are necessary before undergoing any cosmetic treatment. During a consultation, Dr. Janice Kaeley will first need to ensure that you do not have any active tooth decay or periodontal disease. Gum contouring is an effective treatment for:
- Removing Excess Gum Tissue : If you have a “gummy smile,” this procedure can lengthen your teeth for a more natural-looking appearance.
- Shaping Uneven Gums : An asymmetrical gum line can make your teeth appear uneven. Gum contouring can sculpt your gum line and make your smile more uniform.
- Functional Crown Lengthening : In some cases, additional tooth structure must be uncovered in preparation for a restoration, such as a dental crown. Laser therapy is useful in removing small amounts of gum tissue for a proper fit.
Recovering From Gum Contouring
Most patients find laser gum reshaping to be painless. Any resulting pain is generally mild and can be relieved with ibuprofen. Aspirin pain relievers are usually not recommended as they can increase bleeding.
The recovery time for laser gum reshaping varies from person to person. Many people feel fully recovered within a few days, while others may require two weeks. As you recover, it is important to be careful when eating. Avoid crunchy or hard foods that may irritate the healing gums and increase recovery time. Popcorn or foods with small seeds may stick between the teeth and gums during recovery and should also be avoided. Brushing and flossing should not be skipped during recovery but special care should be taken. Use a soft bristled tooth brush and use gentle pressure.
Advantages Of Laser Gum Contouring Over Traditional Gum Contouring
Gum contouring is not a new method of creating symmetry in the smile. Historically, this procedure involved surgical shaping of the soft tissue around teeth using a scalpel. The development of soft tissue lasers has significantly improved the process.
- Less Bleeding During And After Surgery : Laser devices emit heat that cauterizes or closes, blood vessels while “cutting” soft tissue. This sealing of vessels prevents unnecessary bleeding during gum reshaping, and also keeps post-surgical swelling and bleeding to a minimum.
- Lower Infection Risk : Since lasers cauterize as they cut, this also makes laser gum procedures far more sanitary than traditional periodontal surgery. There is a much smaller risk of infection during the gum contouring procedure and during the recovery period.
- Faster Recovery : By reducing bleeding and minimizing the trauma experienced by the gum tissue, patients will typically heal a few days faster after laser surgery. This reduced healing time is excellent for patients since they will be back to normal sooner rather than later.
- Greater Comfort : In addition to being a faster process, recovery after laser gum surgery is also more comfortable due to the effects of heat on nerve endings and blood vessels.
Other Advantages Include:
- Less patient anxiety and fear
- Safe and effective treatment
- Added precision and accuracy
SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION WITH DR. KAELEY TODAY AT SAN RAMON
Dr. Kaeley, one of the best periodontal dentist in the San Francisco Bay Area, shall provide you custom treatment options for your periodontal needs. If you think you might be suffering from gum disease or if you have inflamed, sore or bleeding gums, schedule an appointment with us immediately. We even offer customized sedation options for our patients in San Ramon who experience anxiety about going to the dentist. We want all of our patients to feel totally relaxed and comfortable during their visits with us.
Gum disease can cause tremendous harm to your overall health and should be treated as soon as possible. After you call, the first step will be for us to setup a time for you to come into our office, meet Dr. Kaeley at Progressive Periodontics and Implant Dentistry at San Ramon, CA and discuss your concerns and questions with her. From there, Dr. Kaeley will work with you to develop a customized treatment plan that fits your needs and get you back on the road towards optimal health.
ABOUT YOUR PLEASANTON, CA, PERIODONTIST DR. KAELEY:
We look forward to providing families with exceptional care and advanced treatment options. To Schedule An Appointment with Dr. Kaeley contact our San Ramon, CA, dental office today by calling (925) 860-7071. Our office welcomes new patients in and around San Ramon, CA, including Dublin, Pleasanton, Danville, Blackhawk, Walnut Creek, Lafayette, Castro Valley, Pleasant Hill and the surrounding Contra Costa County communities.