What is gum contouring?
You’ve probably heard of a face-lift – but what exactly is a gum lift?
Aesthetic gum lifting is a cosmetic dentistry procedure which improves the appearance of your smile by removing excess gum tissue to expose more of the crown of the tooth, ensuring the gum line of your teeth is in the best position to complement your teeth. It is commonly done in conjunction with other cosmetic treatments, such as veneers or crowns.
Gum contouring at Elite Dental
Step 1: Consultation
During the consultation visit, a thorough consultation and examination is done to identify your aesthetic treatment goals. Clinical records (x-rays/3D x-rays, photographs, videos and moulds) of your teeth and bite are taken for planning.
Step 2: Treatment planning
Planning your new smile (to ensure a gum and smile line that is in harmony with the rest of your face) is made easier with a process called Digital Smile Design (DSD), so that you can preview what your smile will look like with ALL the proposed cosmetic changes BEFORE starting any invasive treatment. Your DSD will guide all aspects of your cosmetic gum correction as well as any other enhancements.
Since the planning is done digitally, it is easy to tweak the DSD to suit individual preferences. DSD helps to eliminate the uncertainty that is inherent in any cosmetic dental work because beauty can be subjective. Everyone involved (you, your dentist and the dental technician) will be working off a singular vision right from the start.
Because DSD is very precise, the amount of gum tissue that should be removed can be calculated at this stage. The surgical template is simply copied from the DSD.
For very minimal reshaping, this can be done with electrocautery that does not require stitches, produces minimal bleeding and heals rapidly.
For larger volume gum reshaping, you may require surgical crown lengthening that also re-contours the underlying bone. This is usually done by our in-house Gum Specialist (Periodontist).
Step 3: Procedure day
A few days before, a thorough scaling and polishing is done. Most patients also start applying a topical antiseptic gel to the target areas twice daily. An oral probiotic is also given to boost the numbers of beneficial bacteria in the saliva so that healing is smooth.
The gum lift is done under local anaesthetic. If you are having surgical crown lengthening, stitches will be placed in the gums afterward. These will be removed after a few days.
Vigorous brushing or flossing in the treatment area is not advised.
Initial healing is normally complete after 14 days. The gums in the treated area will continue to remodel over 1-3 months, so it is best to delay any other dental enhancements (veneers, crowns etc) until this is complete.