Gum Contouring in Bismarck & Garrison, ND
What is Gum Contouring?
If you have straight, white teeth but feel that your smile shows too much of your gums or if you have an uneven gum line, the Bismarck cosmetic dentists at Deeter Dental can help you correct the issue. Our talented and experienced team offers gum contouring to reshape your gums and highlight your smile.
Importance of Your Gum Line
A crooked gum line or gums which cover up too much of your teeth’s surface can make your smile look lopsided or reserved. Gum contouring removes a portion of your gums to create an even gum line that compliments the size and shape of your teeth. A corrected gum line can make your smile look straighter and can even change others’ perception of you.
Your gum line is so important in the overall aesthetics of your smile that we recommend gum contouring to most of our smile makeover patients.
Who is a candidate for gum contouring?
Most people who are interested in improving the appearance of their smile while protecting their oral health are good candidates for gum contouring. We conduct a thorough consultation and examination of teeth and gums to ensure treatment can be tolerated and successful. If your gum tissue is unhealthy, we may recommend that you undergo periodontics treatment before you undergo gum contouring.
Reasons for Gum Treatment
Gum contouring can be performed to either add or subtract gum tissue.
Some people choose to undergo laser gum contouring to remove gum tissue in a way that allows more of their teeth to show. When there is too much gum tissue, a person appears to have what we call a “gummy smile.” Uncovering more enamel elongates one or more teeth and brings sophistication to the smile.
The other aspect of gum contouring is adding tissue where it is lacking. Some people naturally have longer teeth, while other instances of elongation relate to gum recession. Usually, gum recession is associated with gingivitis and gum disease. However, it is also possible that abrasive brushing can wear down gum tissue over time, causing the appearance of erosion.
Gum Contouring Procedure
Deeter Dental uses soft tissue lasers to reshape your gums. We have chosen to use the Odyssey diode laser by Ivoclar due to its consistent, high-quality results. The Odyssey laser is considered a “cool” laser because it does not produce the feeling of heat or scorch the tissues it interacts with.
When you first meet with our dentists, we will discuss the shape, outcome, and expectations of your gum contouring procedure. Gum contouring is a comfortable procedure that is conducted after tissue has been numbed with local anesthetic. Before using the laser to gently remove gum tissue, the dentist marks the gums to have a guide in the removal process. The patient can observe this “map” before treatment begins.
Contouring in which tissue is grafted is also conducted with a local anesthetic. Patients do not feel discomfort when small pieces of tissue are harvested from a predetermined area (usually the palate). After harvesting tissue, the dentist secures it around the tooth or teeth that have experienced gum recession.
Benefits Of Gum Contouring
Patients who go through the gum contouring procedure usually benefit from one of the following:
- Cover unsightly gums or exposed root surfaces
- improve the appearance of teeth that look too long
- Improve their overall gum health
- Help to reduce the risk of root decay
Types Of Gum Contouring Surgery
- Gingival Lift
- Gum Grafting
Gingival Lift vs Gum Grafting
Gum tissue is necessary to maintain the alignment and stability of teeth, as well as to protect teeth and roots from infection. The soft tissue around a tooth or teeth may recede for several reasons. Alternatively, some people have more visible gum tissue than tooth structure. Either situation can be problematic.
Gum lift surgery is a laser procedure in which the dentist uses a cold laser to carefully restructure the gumline. The laser painlessly trims away excess tissue to reveal more enamel.
Gum grafting is the technique that is needed when too much tooth is showing as a result of gum recession. Grafting may be integrated into a broader scope of treatment that also deep cleans pockets around teeth to remove infection-causing bacteria. Tissue that is harvested from another area of the mouth can then be secured around the exposed part of the tooth to restore stability and protective qualities. There are several gum graft techniques that may be used. Together, the dentist and patient select the most appropriate approach.
What Our Patents Say
“I just want to send out a huge thank you to Dr. Lucas Deeter along with his assistant Christi. They did amazing job on my teeth all that’s left to deal is the healing process.” – Mari A.
Is gum contouring painful?
Laser gum contouring is a conservative method of manipulating soft tissue around teeth. In and of itself, a soft tissue laser is gentler and more precise than a scalpel. Our use of a cold laser device further enhances the patient experience. Lasers reduce bleeding by immediately cauterizing blood vessels. This improves comfort both during and after treatment.
We perform gum contouring treatments with a local anesthetic, as well, which numbs the area of the mouth being treated for several hours.
Recovery after Gum Reshaping
After gum contouring treatment, many patients limit activities for the remainder of the day. Our office can suggest over-the-counter medications that can control comfort without causing bleeding. Additionally, we provide instructions on how to brush and floss while the gums heal. Patients may wish to prepare ahead of time for their recovery by cooking or purchasing healthy, soft foods that do not require much chewing. Ice cream, yogurt, soups, eggs, and pasta are good food choices during the initial days of recovery. Patients should also avoid spicy foods and items with seeds, including popcorn, until their gums have healed completely.
Is gum contouring safe?
Laser gum contouring is considered extremely safe. The minimal risks associated with treatment include allergic reaction to the local anesthetic and a recurrence of gum growth or gum recession after the procedure. If recurrence were to happen, this usually occurs over time. The problem can be corrected with a touch-up procedure.
Alternatives to Gum Reshaping
In some cases, patients may alter the appearance of their smile using porcelain crowns or veneers. These lifelike restorations enhance the smile by modifying the overall shape and size of individual teeth.
Schedule a Consultation
Please contact our Bismarck cosmetic dentists today to learn more about gum contouring or to schedule your consultation. We welcome patients from Bismarck, the surrounding areas of North Dakota. Call our Bismarck office at 701.222.1800 or our Garrison office at 701.463.2884.