What is Crown Lengthening?
Crown lengthening (or crown exposure) is required when your tooth needs a new crown or other restoration. This is often due to extensive caries beneath the gum line or tooth fracture. The procedure involves exposing more of the tooth by repositioning the gum and bone tissue. This creates a new gum-to-tooth relationship that allows your dentist to fabricate a properly fitting long-term restoration.
What do I need to know before a Crown Lengthening appointment?
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment to complete necessary paperwork. Prior to your appointment we will call-in your prescriptions to your pharmacy, analgesic/antibiotic/ chlorohexidine gluconate mouth rinse, which can be picked up prior to your appointment. If you wish, a written prescription can be provided.
Crown Lengthening is performed in the office with local anesthesia (you will be profoundly numb, lasting 4-8 hours) so you can drive yourself to and from the office. It is best that you take the rest of the day off, but some people do return to work immediately following treatment. The procedure is less complex than tooth extraction or root canal therapy. It is similar to having a crown preparation. Sutures will either dissolve or be removed in 7-14 days. Oxyfresh gel is applied, primary ingredient being aloe, to promote healing and act as another level of disinfection. Often a soft periodontal dressing, bubble-gum like material, is placed to initially protect the area of treatment. Typically your general dentist can do a posterior crown preparation in 4-6 weeks post Crown Lengthening treatment (8-12 weeks for an anterior crown).
If you feel nervous or anxious concerning this treatment then conscious sedation (IV and/or oral) can be made available when planned in advance. Please refer to the Anesthesia & Sedation section for specific pre-surgical instructions.