Crown Lengthening: What Does the Process Entail?
Dental crowns are also called tooth-shaped caps that encase a natural tooth for structural and aesthetic reasons. Crowns are recommended when a tooth is broken, weakened by extensive cavities, misshapen, or cracked. Crowns are also useful for completing dental procedures like bridges, root canals, and dental implants. The existing tooth must have sufficient structure for the crown to firmly affix to it.
Crown lengthening is also beneficial, and dental surgeons perform the lengthening recontouring gum tissue and even the bone to expose more of the tooth’s structure for a crown. The procedure requires fewer than an hour to complete and is standard for many people.
The Reasons for Crown Lengthening
If your tooth doesn’t have sufficient structure to hold a dental crown by itself, you may need crown lengthening. Broken teeth affected by tooth decay may prevent a crown from attaching firmly. Gum tissue is reduced by crown lengthening and the bone if required to make more of the tooth visible above the gum surface. Well fitted crowns allow for better oral hygiene and comfort.
Some people seek crown lengthening from a dental clinic to alter a gummy smile. A gummy smile makes the gums of the individual more visible when smiling.
Preparing for Crown Lengthening
Your dental Surgeon fits you with a temporary crown until you can have the procedure for crown lengthening. The temporary crown protects your tooth in the meanwhile and makes the fitting of the new crown easier.
Before your scheduled procedure, you will meet with the dental specialists in Coquitlam to give your medical history and to view your x-rays. This is the appointment when you must provide information about any medications you take to the dental specialist. They will determine whether you must discontinue any medicines before the procedure.
What Happens During Crown Lengthening
The crown lengthening procedure is performed in an outpatient setting by dental specialists. The outpatient procedure indicates you can go home immediately afterward. The time needed for the process varies depending on the number of teeth needing a lengthening and whether both soft tissue and bone need removal. If you have temporary crowns on the neighboring teeth, the specialists remove the restorations and restore them after the procedure.
You receive local anesthesia besides oral sedation. Your gums are cut to pull them away from your teeth to expose the roots and bone. Some cases only require gum tissue removal. The specialist cleans the surgical area with saltwater before stitching it up. The wound is covered with addressing for additional protection.
As the anesthesia begins wearing off, you experience painful situations. However, the specialist prescribes pain relievers or a specialized mouth rinse to help your gums recover.
Are There Any Risks Involved with Crown Lengthening?
The risks involved with crown lengthening procedures are similar to any other surgery. You must follow the post-operative instructions provided by the specialist to help prevent infection. Contact your dental office with any questions you may have during the recovery period.
You may experience some bleeding in the surgical area after the crown lengthening procedure. Your teeth may experience sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. Your tooth will appear longer than the neighboring teeth. If the specialist removed any bone, the tooth might feel loose. If you experience tooth loss in the future, the crown lengthening procedure makes it challenging for the specialist to provide a dental implant.
Recovering from Crown Lengthening
Recovering from crown lengthening procedures need approximately three months. You can resume your regular activities as your gums heal. You must avoid strenuous activity during the initial 72 hours because heavy exertion can inhibit your healing and cause more bleeding. You can discuss the specifics of your recovery with the specialist but will do well to follow the guidelines mentioned below for help:
- Take any medicines prescribed or recommended as suggested. Your dental specialist provides after-care instructions and may prescribe antibiotics besides more potent painkillers to help you with the discomfort. Take the medicines as recommended without overdosing on them.
- You may experience swelling in your face during the initial few hours. Using an ice pack on your cheeks can help reduce swelling.
- Subsist on a diet of cold foods during the first 24 hours, after which you must use a soft diet and avoid hard, brittle, acidic, spicy, or sticky foods. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water but avoiding alcohol during the recovery.
Oral procedures, like crown lengthening, are becoming more effective and efficient. Crown lengthening is performed both for dental and aesthetic purposes. When specialists like the ones in Coquitlam perform the procedure, you can expect the process to proceed smoothly and increase your teeth’ health and longevity.