Coronary lengthening is a micro-surgery procedure, generally with aesthetic application. This treatment involves harmonizing the gingival contours to increase the surface of the tooth crown, resulting in a more beautiful, harmonious smile.
How much does crown lengthening cost?
There are several factors that will affect the cost of crown lengthening procedures. Often, the main factor we need to consider when estimating the costs is the number of teeth treated. Expect to spend much more for a larger number of teeth that need work, but generally crown lengthening costs somewhere between $60 and $1,100 or more.
You should expect to pay anywhere between $60 and $370 for removing the excess gum around one tooth. Plan on spending almost $1,100 or more, if the procedure will require treatment of a number of teeth.
Usually, if a natural tooth has to be treated, the teeth around it may also need a little gum reshaping in order to make sure that the gumline looks even.
You may be able to cover a part of the cost or all of it if you have a dental insurance plan. Your insurance coverage will be influenced by the purpose of the procedure. Most probably, less of the costs will be covered if the surgery is done for cosmetic reasons, than if it is done for repairing a tooth decay or damaged tooth.
When is this procedure recommended?
It is recommended if your smile has a “gummy” appearance and the teeth are covered by a large amount of gum that could be removed, resulting in a smile that reveals more of the visible surface area of the teeth.
However, there are other situations where it is necessary:
- when the dental crowns are short and not favorable for prosthetic reconstruction;
- when there are caries in a subgingival location;
- in case of resorptions and fractures of the roots located close to the gingival margin.
Crown lengthening procedure – stages/how it proceeds?
The coronary lengthening surgery is not painful because it is performed after complete anesthesia of the area so that the patient does not feel any pain during the procedure.
To begin with, anesthesia is required, to numb the gum and bone very well, then a small incision (“cut”) will be made, both at the level of the gum from the cheek and at the level of the gum from the tongue/palate (“heaven mouth”).
The gum will be set aside, in a delicate way, to expose the bone, subsequently removing a small amount of it. As a result, a larger surface of the tooth will be exposed, it being “elongated”.
Once the tooth has been sufficiently exposed, the gum will be sutured (stitched) into a new position to keep the tooth above the gum. The procedure is carried out in one session, it is not unpleasant at all, and the patient will probably feel a slight sensation of discomfort post-intervention. However, this will be controlled with the anti-inflammatory medication prescribed by the doctor.
The gum will heal, as a rule, after about 7-10 days. However, for complete healing, which allows the adaptation of a new artificial dental crown (if needed), a time interval between 6 and 8 weeks is required.
What should I do after crown lengthening?
It is important that the patient does not stop brushing and sanitizing the oral cavity after crown lengthening. Brushing will be carried out as usual, twice a day, avoiding the area where the intervention was carried out. The use of dental floss or oral irrigator is not indicated in that area. It will be sanitized exclusively, by rinsing with mouthwash with chlorhexidine gluconate, 3-4 times a day, following the doctor’s recommendation. Rinsing the oral cavity with energetic movements involving the muscles of the cheeks is prohibited.
If the patient feels pain of medium intensity after coronary lengthening, it is recommended to calm it down with an anti-inflammatory drug or other pain medications. If the pain increases in intensity or swelling appear, the doctor should be contacted.
Smoking is not indicated after any surgical intervention, and it is recommended to postpone it for as long as possible. Due to the fact that the toxins in cigarette smoke affect the healing of the gums, smoking is prohibited for at least 72 hours after the intervention. Cigarette smoke can delay healing and lead to inflammation of the area, affecting the final result.
Physical activity (gym, running, swimming, etc.) must be avoided for 3-4 days.
The diet after coronary lengthening should not include crunchy (chips, peanuts, etc.), acidic, or spicy foods until the area is completely healed.
Is there another alternative to surgical crown lengthening?
Crown lengthening can be replaced by orthodontic extrusion of the tooth that needs treatment. Orthodontic extrusion is performed with the help of a dental device, applied by the specialist orthodontist.
Orthodontic extrusion has the advantage of being non-invasive, thus being more indicated, but it has the disadvantage of being a procedure that requires more time. The patient must wear fixed braces on the 2 neighboring teeth for 4-6 months, depending on the recommendation of the dentist.