Cosmetic Periodontal Surgery
Cosmetic periodontal procedures are specialized forms of periodontal surgery designed to enhance your smile by covering unsightly exposed root surfaces or, conversely, lengthening your natural teeth. If you are unhappy with appearance of short, unattractive teeth because of a “gummy smile” or exposure of excessive root structure due to gum recession periodontal cosmetic surgery may be right for you. We can correct either by performing periodontal plastic surgical procedures with root coverage grafts or removal of excessive gum tissue through crown lengthening.
Most “gummy smiles” are due to the presence of excessive gum tissue that partially covers your natural tooth making the tooth appear unnaturally short and square. We can correct this by performing a periodontal plastic surgery procedure, crown lengthening. During this procedure, excess gum as well as bone tissue are reshaped to expose more of tooth and improve the curvature of the gum-line around the tooth. This can be done to more than one tooth, to even your gum line, and to create a beautiful smile.
Another cosmetic problem encountered with gum esthetics is indentations in the gums from the loss of a tooth. Removal a tooth causes the jawbone and gums to recede leaving an unnatural and unattractive looking concavity in the gums altering the appearance of the replacement tooth. The original look of your teeth may not be recaptured because of spaces remaining under and between replacement teeth. They may appear too long or wide compared to nearby teeth. Soft-tisse ridge augmentation or bone grafting can be used to rebuild the lost gum and jaw bone and returning it to its more natural shape.
Bone grafting and/or gum grafting (augmentation) following tooth loss can preserve the socket/ridge and minimize gum and bone collapse. There is less shrinkage and a more aesthetic tooth replacement for either an implant crown or fixed bridge around the replacement teeth.
For more information about crown lengthening, gum grafting, and bone grafting, please refer to the treatment section of our website, and click on each individual procedure for an in-depth description.
Root Coverage Grafting
Gum Grafting to Cover Exposed Roots
Patients may look older than their years because their teeth appear to be too long ( long in the tooth). When gum tissue recedes or deteriorates it exposes the underlying root surface making the tooth longer. Gingival grafting included a variety of techniques that add gum tissue to the tooth to cover the exposed root surface. The addition of gum tissue returns the tooth to its natural (original) esthetic length. Below are examples of patients treated by Dr. Orth using root coverage gum grafting techniques at our office in Dallas, TX.
Case Report #1: Before and After Root Coverage
Case Report #2: Before and after Root Coverage
Case Report #3: Before and after Root Coverage
Esthetic Crown Lengthening
If you feel that your teeth are too short and your smile is too “gummy” or that your gumline is uneven, covering too much of some teeth, while leaving others the right length, a simple cosmetic treatment might be just right for you.
Your teeth probably are not “too short” at all. In fact, they are just the right length. You simply have too much gum tissue covering you teeth and hiding your smile.
Esthetic crown lengthening surgery removes the excess gum tissue to expose more of the “crown” of the tooth. Your gumline is then sculpted to give your new smile just the right look. If restorations are necessary, this procedure sets the stage allowing you new veneers or crowns to have the correct length and shape, giving you a beautiful smile.
Esthetic Crown lengthening Case Studies Performed by Dr. Orth
What is Cosmetic Gum Augmentation?
A gum augmentation is a common dental procedure often performed following a tooth extraction to help recreate the natural contour of the gums and jaw. This is accomplished with bone grafting or gum transplantation.
The alveolar ridge of the jaw is the bone that surrounds the roots of teeth. When a tooth is removed, an empty socket is left in the alveolar ridge bone. Usually this empty socket will heal on its own, filling with bone and tissue. Sometimes when a tooth is removed, the bone surrounding the socket breaks or shrinks upon healing. The previous height, width and shape of the gum contours are lost creating an indentation in the gums. So when a replacement tooth is added the crown of the tooth must be enlarged to fill the space. The result is usually a tooth that is disproportional to the other teeth affecting the appearance of the teeth and smile.
Rebuilding the original height and width of the alveolar ridge is not medically necessary, but can dramatically improve the aesthetic of the replacement teeth.
How is the Surgery Accomplished?
A ridge augmentation is accomplished by placing bone graft material in the tooth socket at the time of tooth removal to minimize shrinkage of the bone and gums. Next, the gum tissue is placed over the socket or separately and secured with sutures. Dr. Orth may choose to use a space-maintaining product over the top of the graft to help restore the height and width of the space created by the tooth and bone loss, and into which new bone should grow. Once the surgery has healed, the alveolar ridge can be prepared for dental implant placement or conventional bridge.
A ridge augmentation procedure is typically performed in Dr. Orth‘s office under local anesthesia and conscious sedation. Below are examples of cosmetic gum augmentation surgery to show the benefits of the procedure to improve the appearance of the teeth and smile.
Gum Augmentation Cases Performed by Dr. Orth
Case 1. Surgical addition of gum to fill-in collapsed tissue
Case 2. Gum Augmentation to Cover Exposed Implants