For those who have always hesitated to smile due to seeing more gum than teeth, crown lengthening transforms the smile. But did you know that it can also help prevent periodontal disease? Or that it may be able to allow for crowns and bridges to be placed?
Regardless of why you are undergoing this procedure, thoughts of recovery have likely crossed your mind. What can you expect? And How long does crown lengthening take to heal?
Truth is, the recovery process can take time - anywhere from 2 to 3 months. But don’t let that scare you away. This procedure has been transformative and life-changing for many patients. Once you get through the healing, the outcome will be worth it.
What is Crown Lengthening?
Crown lengthening is the process of removing or repositioning excess gum tissue around a tooth - allowing more of the tooth’s structure to be exposed. There are a few reasons why someone may need to undergo crown lengthening, such as:
- Excess gum is around the teeth, making them look short
- You need more “tooth” to secure a dental crown
- Severe tooth decay is found below the gum line
- A tooth is broken or fractured below the gum line
Although this procedure can be considered invasive, it is done using an anesthetic - and has a very high success rate when performed by an experienced periodontist.
The Crown Lengthening Healing Process
As we mentioned above, crown lengthening can take about two to three months to completely heal. Though extra care the first couple of days following the procedure will be the most crucial.
During this time, you will want to take it easy - especially when it comes to your gums. This means sticking to liquids and soft foods without requiring your gums to do any chewing. Foods like yogurt, oatmeal, macaroni and cheese, soups, smoothies, and so forth can be very beneficial in providing this downtime.
Below are a few additional healing tips:
- Oral hygiene. Brushing the surgical area should be avoided for the first couple of days following the procedure, too. The soft tissue needs to heal and applying the pressure of a toothbrush could be quite damaging.
- Pain and swelling. You can expect to feel some pain or discomfort once the anesthesia wears off, but this should be easily managed using over-the-counter pain medicine. Any swelling can be addressed with gentle pressure from cool compresses over the area.
- No smoking or rinsing. Do not smoke after your crown lengthening procedure. And do not vigorously rinse your mouth.
As time passes, the gum tissue will still be healing, but you can return to a fairly normal routine. After all, just because it takes a couple of months to fully heal, doesn’t mean that it will greatly impact your life throughout this timeframe.
It is important to note that if you are getting a crown or a bridge, the tooth must be completely healed before any next steps can be taken.
Learn More About Crown Lengthening
Crown lengthening can not only help to enhance your smile, but it can give you better oral health, too. And the dental professionals at Kopman Periodontics & Dental Implant Solutions can provide the best treatment.
To learn more about the crown lengthening process, contact us today at 631-351-3444. Or request an appointment online.