Gum lifting, also known as ‘gingivectomy’, is a cosmetic dentistry procedure which improves the aesthetics of your smile by ensuring the gum line of your teeth is in the best possible position to show off your teeth.
It is usually done along with other cosmetic treatments, such as veneers or crowns. The aim of a gum lift is to restructure excessive or uneven gum tissue surrounding your teeth so your gums are symmetrical and in proportion to your smile, rather than having a ‘gummy smile’.
Why do some people’s gums show when they smile?
Sometimes it’s because your teeth didn’t come through properly and look too short because they’re covered in gum tissue. It can also be because you happen to have smaller-than-average teeth, or if your upper lip is a little shorter than average, you will see more gum than usual.
The reasons for ‘gummy smiles’ are generally genetic, but your National Dental Care practitioner can balance your gum line with your teeth.
How it’s done
The procedure is quick and relatively painless. The gum area around the front teeth is usually the only area corrected, as this is the most visible section of your smile. Your National Dental Care dentist will cut into and reshape the unsightly gum area, using a soft-tissue laser to seal off the blood vessels and minimise any bleeding.
There are no stitches involved, and the procedure is usually very quick and relatively painless. You should be able to eat and drink within 24 hours after surgery, and your gums will heal completely within the week after.
Any pain after the procedure can be controlled using over the counter medicines, and should only be necessary immediately after the surgery.
If the gum lift is undergone at the same time as other cosmetic surgery, recovery time may be longer. Your National Dental Care dentist will advise you on expected post-surgery recovery time.
To ensure best long term results, you will be advised to attend regular follow up appointments and follow prescribed at-home oral hygiene instructions. This will help prevent infections, further gum recession and keep your new smile looking healthy and clean.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding with a surgical or invasive procedure, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.