Dental Implants

Gum Contouring in Stamford, CT

Drs. Clabaugh & Trentalancia provides gum contouring in Stamford, CT. Call 203-327-2540 to learn more and schedule your appointment.

Gum contouring is an umbrella term that refers to two different procedures with similar goals: crown lengthening, in which gum tissue is removed, and gingival grafting, where gum tissue is added in places where it has receded. Whether the gum tissue is being reduced or enhanced, the outcome is achieving a balanced aesthetic, improved oral health, or both.


Crown Lengthening


Crown lengthening is a procedure used to correct a “gummy smile.” Sometimes this is genetic, other times it can be caused by orthodontic treatment. Crown lengthening is also commonly used when more of a tooth needs to be exposed in order to place a dental crown. Whatever the reason, crown lengthening is a simple procedure that can be performed under local anesthesia.

During crown lengthening, we remove the excess gum tissue around your teeth. Because you’ll be given local anesthetic injections before we start any work, you won’t feel any pain during the procedure itself, but afterwards you can expect to feel some discomfort. This is usually mild and can be relieved with cold compresses and over-the-counter pain medications.


Gingival Grafting


Also known as gum grafts, this procedure involves adding tissue when the gums have receded. Gum recession is a normal part of the aging process (it’s where the phrase “long in the tooth” comes from) or the result of periodontal disease. When gums recede, it’s not only a cosmetic issue, but it also leads to painful sensitivity and even the risk of eventual tooth loss.

As with crown lengthening, your mouth will be numb during the gingival grafting procedure. Tissue will be removed from the elsewhere in the mouth, usually the roof or the back gums, and used to augment the areas where gum recession has occurred. Your gumline is restructured and dissolvable sutures are used to hold the new tissue in place. After the procedure is complete, you may experience some tenderness and inflammation, which can be eased with cold compresses and over-the-counter pain relievers.


Frequently Asked Questions About Gum Contouring


Is gum contouring painful?


Gum contouring is not painful, as it is done with local anesthetic. After the procedure, you are likely to experience some minor discomfort for a few days. Follow the aftercare instructions we provide to help manage any pain.


How long does gum contouring take to heal?


This depends on the procedure we perform and how extensive the work is. It can take as little as a few days or as much as six weeks to fully heal after gum contouring treatment.


Do gums grow back after gum contouring?


In a small number of cases, gum tissue may grow back after gum contouring, but this is rare.


Is gum grafting permanent?


Yes, gum grafting is a permanent treatment for receding gum tissue and produces long-lasting results as long as aftercare instructions are followed and oral health is maintained. Periodontitis can cause the gums to begin to recede again, so it’s important to brush twice a day, floss once a day, and see the dentist every six months.


Why are my gums receding so fast?


Gums naturally begin to recede with age, but if your gum recession is dramatic, it could be caused by periodontitis (gum disease) or over-brushing with a hard-bristled toothbrush.


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