Gum Lift In Woodland Hills
Healthy, pink gums that cushion your teeth are an important aspect of an attractive smile. Excessive, puffy or uneven gum tissue can distort your smile and overwhelm beautiful teeth. A gum lift (also known as gum recontouring) is a dental procedure that improves the ratio of gums to teeth for a more even and proportional smile. Dr. Fredericks performs gum lifts at Southern Cal Smiles, our Woodlands Hills dental practice. If you feel self-conscious about your “gummy smile,” a gum lift is your best option for correction.
What Can a Gum Lift Fix?
Gum lift improves the balance between your gums and teeth for a more attractive smile. It is usually performed on the gums surrounding the front teeth that show when you smile. Gum lift can accomplish the following:
- Treat a smile that looks excessively “gummy”
- Even out the gingival contours
- Cover exposed tooth root surfaces
- Reveal more of teeth that are covered by gum tissue and look small
- Improve teeth that look crooked or oddly angled because of excess gum tissue
Dr. Fredericks may also reshape the gingival tissue for other reasons. For example, people with poor dental hygiene habits may develop deep gum pockets because they don’t brush properly and calculus and plaque has built up. Dr. Fredericks can use a laser to sterilize and seal the gum pockets.
What to Expect During a Gum Lift
Dr. Fredericks performs gum lift in her Woodland Hills dental office. She uses a laser in gingival sculpting and contouring procedures. First, she will apply a local anesthetic to the gums to prevent discomfort. Then, she will direct a soft tissue laser at the gums to remove excess tissue that obstructs the teeth. She will also reshape the gum tissue to lift the gum line and reveal more of the teeth.
One of the challenges of gum lift surgery is to reveal precisely the right amount of tooth structure; Dr. Fredericks is careful not to remove too much gum tissue, as this can throw off the balance between the teeth and the gums.
Laser gum lift is a virtually painless cosmetic dentistry procedure. The laser seals the excess gum tissue to reduce bleeding and prevent the need for stitches, which in turn speeds up the gum lift recovery process. Usually one laser gum lift treatment is sufficient to correct the imperfections of the gums.
Recovering From Gum Lift Surgery
Dr. Fredericks performs gum lift surgery with the use of a soft tissue laser, which not only enhances the precision of the procedure but minimizes the recovery period as well. Before the procedure, Dr. Fredericks applies a local anesthetic to the gums to minimize pain and discomfort. The dentist then trims and reshapes the gum tissue using the laser. The laser also seals the excess gum tissue to reduce bleeding. There are no stitches involved but patients may feel minor discomfort immediately after the procedure. Dr. Fredericks may recommend over-the-counter medication to alleviate discomfort.
Typically, gum lift surgery requires no more than one day of healing. However, each patient and procedure is different. Your recovery will ultimately depend on several factors including the extent of the procedure and whether it is performed alone or as part of a larger cosmetic treatment plan (e.g., smile makeover). Dr. Fredericks can give you a more accurate recovery timeline during a personal consultation.
Post-Op Care Matters
While your gums will heal quickly after gum lift surgery, Dr. Fredericks recommends you take steps to make sure your results are long-lasting. Immediately after your procedure, Dr. Fredericks may advise you to follow a strict diet of soft foods and liquids for a few days. While complications from gum lift are rare, your post-op care is important. Taking the following steps can prevent infection and unnecessary discomfort and speed up your recovery process.
- Rinse your mouth with warm water twice daily
- Brush gently but frequently to avoid plaque buildup around your gums
- Floss daily to remove plaque in between teeth
- Do not smoke, as it slows down the healing process
Learn More about Gum Lifts
If you are unhappy with a gummy smile or have noticed that excessive gum tissue obstructs your beautiful teeth, consider gum lift with Woodland Hills cosmetic dentist Susan Fredericks. Contact Southern Cal Smiles today for more information about the procedure.