For many people, a gum lift or gum graft could be an essential procedure that helps protect your teeth and smile. Both procedures are available to you at Bunker Hill Dentistry. Read on to find out if you are a candidate for either treatment and learn what the procedures entail. Gum Lift Treatment Raise your gum line to a healthy level with gum lift surgery to create a more natural, beautiful smile. Gum contouring helps shape the smile to remove excessive gum tissue and the appearance of short teeth. Improve your smile and boost your self-confidence with this sculpting technique. Used on the front 10 teeth, in most cases, a gum lift surgery can get rid of your gummy smile or gummy teeth within just a couple of hours. Gum Lift – Before and After Take a look at before and after photos of this correction. When you do, you will notice that the procedure can transform the look of your smile significantly. For many men and women, gum reduction is necessary due to the sheer amount of tissue surrounding the teeth. While this is a cosmetic procedure, one that does not impact the overall health of the teeth, it is nearly always one of the best ways to improve your smile’s appearance. This periodontal procedure is performed using a soft-tissue laser, is very safe, works to the highest level of precision, and doesn’t cause pain. At Bunker Hill Dentistry, our doctors will work closely with you to determine if gum lift treatment is the best option for you. With years of experience, we are confident we can help you to get the best-looking smile possible. Who Is a Good Candidate for Gum Lift Surgery? If you look in the mirror, you may notice that your teeth look short. Your gums may be pulling too far over the edge of your tooth. Instead of the clearly defined, rounded edges, the gums seem to be bulky or too evident. The causes of a gummy smile are many, prominent among them being genetics. You may be a good candidate for this procedure if your oral hygiene is relatively good and you have completed any type of treatment for gum health. When you come in for a consultation, we’ll discuss your gummy smile and determine if gum lift surgery is an ideal choice for you. This is often an under-recommended procedure but it can be one of the best ways to improve your self-confidence. In many cases, the results last for years as well making it well worth the investment. During your consultation, we’ll discuss your gum health, previous oral hygiene treatments you may have had, and your desired goals. We can provide you with examples of before and after photos, so you can learn more about expected results. If you are unsure if this is the right procedure for you, simply come in for a no-risk consultation. How Does the Procedure Work? The gum lift procedure is customized for your needs. In most cases, the front 10 teeth receive the treatment. We work carefully with skill and precision to create the desired outcome. This is done by using a soft-tissue laser. The laser does not burn and does not cause any damage to your teeth. We use the laser to vaporize and remove the excessive gum tissue along the edge of your teeth. There may be some bleeding, but it is carefully controlled throughout the process. Most of the time, gum lift treatment takes about two hours to complete. You’ll be relaxed during the procedure. We use a local anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide to help reduce any pain or discomfort and to allow you to relax throughout it. It’s all done in our serene office setting. After the procedure, you may have some gum swelling initially. This will reduce in the coming days. Some patients may feel some discomfort or soreness in the days following the procedure. Generally, there is medication that can help to reduce this. We’ll talk thoroughly about aftercare when you come in for your procedure. Most people have very little to no downtime. Once the anesthesia wears off, you’ll be able to go about your day. You’ll begin noticing the difference quickly. We may recommend coming in for a follow-up appointment if there are any concerns. Schedule A Gum Lift Appointment Not been to Bunker Hill Dentistry before? Read how to prepare for your first visit in our FAQs. Gum Graft Treatment Whereas gum lift treatment tackles the issue of excessive gums, a gum graft (also called gingival graft) focuses on the opposite, exposed teeth and roots caused by too little gum tissue. A gum graft surgery adds gum tissue to areas where it is missing. It restores the look of your smile by replacing lost gum tissue from gingivitis recession, excessive brushing, teeth clenching, or gum disease. If you have gum recession due to ill-fitting teeth due to a poor bite, this procedure can also be very helpful. It works quickly to help repair the lost tissue, creating a healthy smile. It is a fast and highly effective treatment that can boost your confidence. During gum graft surgery, your doctor will restore your gum line. A gum graft is the exact opposite of a gum lift. Your dentist will add healthy, natural tissue to the area where the gums are located, creating a natural-looking, healthy smile. Many people need this form of gum restoration because of gum disease. If you have periodontitis or gingivitis, it will cause the gums to recede, or pull back. This happens at a very slow rate which explains why it often goes undetected. However, the damage can become excessive if not treated. When you have significant gum loss, more of the tooth and potentially the tooth’s roots can become exposed, causing heightened sensitivity and damage to the supporting bone with the possibility of tooth loss. With this type of gum reconstruction, we can correct the gum loss, repair the existing tissue, and give you a healthy-looking, structurally sound smile again. Who Is a Good Candidate for Gum Graft Surgery? The best way to know if you are a good candidate for gum graft surgery is to come in for a consultation. Our team may recommend the procedure during your teeth cleaning or routine dental visit as well. Your oral care is essential and having healthy gums is necessary to help support your teeth and hold them in place. We may recommend this procedure in several cases, especially when you have significant gum recession. You may benefit from this procedure if you have significant sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures or some types of spicy or very sweet foods. You may also benefit if your teeth look longer than normal when you look at them in the mirror. This indicates the gums are receding and exposing more of the underlying root and bone. You may notice larger or increasing spaces between your teeth. This is due to the advancing periodontal disease. For many people, the roots of the teeth become obvious, significantly impacting your smile. While gum graft surgery can be seen as a cosmetic procedure, it is also one we may recommend to you if your teeth are at risk of being lost. Don’t wait too long to come in for a consultation. How Does the Procedure Work? During gum graft procedures, we need to add healthy tissue to the areas where the gums are receding, and tissue loss is significant. To do this, we generally use your own gum tissue. In some cases, it can be removed from the roof of the mouth. This is the ideal option because it allows for a natural match and less risk for infection. If this is not possible, we use skin from a tissue bank. There are several steps to the process. We can also choose several types of grafts including connective tissue grafts, which is the most common option when there is root exposure, This involves cutting a flap of skin from the palate of your mouth. We remove just enough tissue from under this flap and stitch it to the existing gum tissue near the exposed root. Another option involves using a small amount of the tissue directly from the roof of the mouth. If you have very thin gums, this may be the ideal option for you. We can also perform a pedicle graft, which uses gum tissue from the surrounding areas of the tooth that needs repair, if there is sufficient tissue available. The procedure is done in our office. It takes between one and three hours to complete. We will use a local anesthetic and Nitrous Oxide to help you relax during the procedure. You may have some discomfort when you wake up, but over-the-counter pain medication is usually all that you need. Some swelling is also common but this improves in the days following the procedure. You may need to come in for a follow-up appointment to ensure everything is healing properly. It takes a bit of time for the new gum tissue to heal and reach its final look, but you’ll notice improvements right away and your recovery should be pain-free. Schedule A Gum Graft Appointment Not been to Bunker Hill Dentistry before? Read how to prepare for your first visit in our FAQs.