Gum tissue is important for the support of your teeth and for the appearance of your smile. However, too much tissue can become problematic. Thick or excessively overgrown gum tissue that covers the upper portion of the teeth makes them appear too short and makes your smile look uneven. Excessive gum tissue can be caused by certain medications, the height of the underlying bone in relation to the teeth, or the inflammatory effects of gum disease.

We can successfully eliminate excess gum tissue with an in-office surgical procedure known as a gingivectomy.

When is a Gingivectomy Recommended?

There are a number of instances in which a gingivectomy might be recommended. The following reasons are among the most common:

Cosmetic Concerns

By removing excessive gum tissue in certain areas, we can bring more symmetry and more natural proportions to your smile. Simply removing a few millimeters of gum tissue can make the teeth look longer and your gumline more uniform.

Functional/Oral Hygiene Concerns

Severe gingival overgrowth is a side-effect of certain anti-seizure, high blood pressure, and organ-transplant medications. As the gums grow, many patients find that proper brushing and flossing becomes more difficult. In these instances, the gums also tend to become more sensitive and irritated. Even after the medication has ended, the gum tissue does not typically shrink back to its original size and shape. Instead, we must often surgically reduce the size and shape of the gumline to restore proper oral health and function.

Periodontal Health

To improve your ability to control plaque in deep gum pockets and manage periodontal disease, removing excess gum tissue is frequently recommended.

An Overview of the Procedure

During the procedure, your comfort is Dr. Tomlin’s utmost concern, and local anesthetics will be administered to the treatment area. When you are ready, we’ll begin carefully removing small amounts of tissue with hand-held instruments or a dental laser. Sutures (stitches) are not generally necessary, though you should expect to experience some tenderness for 24-48 hours after surgery. To alleviate discomfort during this time, Dr. Tomlin will prescribed medication for you and a follow-up appointment should be scheduled for one week after surgery.

Learn more about the gingivectomy procedure by contacting our office today.