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Is Gum Contouring Right for You?

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A good smile can do wonders for an individual's self-esteem, there's no question about that. After all, a confident smile usually translates to a confident person. However, the likes of misaligned teeth, missing teeth and uneven gums can really put a damper on your smile and on your confidence. While orthodontics and general dentistry can help to resolve issues with the teeth, many people incorrectly believe that there's nothing that can be done to correct issues with how their gums look. They're wrong, as a popular oral surgery for those with gums that are either too high or too low on the teeth is gum contouring.

What is Gum Contouring?

Also commonly referred to as "gum reshaping" and "tissue sculpting," gum contouring is essentially the process of evening out a gum line that is uneven. It typically involves the use of either scalpels, lasers or radiosurgery to accomplish, and is normally carried out right in the dentist's office. The area that is being treated is also usually numbed prior to the procedure to ensure patient comfort throughout the process.

Gum contouring is an outpatient procedure and the recovery process is usually very fast. While soreness and tenderness may occur in the days following the surgery, the gums usually fully heal in a matter of weeks. Any pain or discomfort can be managed by taking over-the-counter painkillers.

Causes and Risks

There are four main things that may cause your gums to rest either too high or too low on the teeth. These are:

  • Genetics
  • A medical condition
  • The result of taking certain prescription medication
  • To compliment other dental procedures or treatments

While gum contouring is generally a safe, effective and fast procedure, it does have certain risks associated with it. For instance, the gum tissue that is being removed may eventually grow back. There's also the small risk that the patient will develop an allergic reaction from the anesthesia that is administered prior to the procedure.

Noting all of this, it's important to realize that gum contouring isn't a viable procedure for everyone. That's why consulting with your dentist and understanding the potential risks and probable results is an important step when deciding whether or not to pursue such treatment. Your dentist can show you exactly what your gum line will look after the procedure in the planning process so that you can decide together whether the treatment is a worthwhile endeavor.

It's also worth noting that most dental insurance policies don't cover gum contouring, as it is considered an optional cosmetic procedure.

For more information on gum contouring and to better determine if it's a viable solution for your smile, contact Caven Dental today.

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