The gum tissue can be very thick and large covering the tooth surface making the teeth look short. This can happen because of medications, bone that extends too close to the surface of the teeth, or inflammation due to gum disease.
A gingivectomy is a periodontal procedure that eliminates excess gum tissue. The term “gingivectomy” is derived from Latin:
- “gingiva” means gum tissue,
- “-ectomy” means to remove.
The following are some reasons a gingivectomy might be needed:
Cosmetics: To make the teeth look longer and more proportional when the gum is covering too much of it.
Functional/Esthetics: To remove excess gum tissue (gingival overgrowth) that has formed as a result of certain drugs such as anti-seizure and organ-transplant medications, and certain high blood pressure medications.
Bone and gum health around the teeth: To reduce deep gum pockets. This procedure might require additional procedures as well.
The Gingivectomy Procedure
Dr. Morarend first will anesthetize the area(s) to be treated. The excess of gum tissue is removed either with instruments or a laser. In most cases no sutures are required. The surgical sites will be sore for 24-48 hours. A week follow-up appointment is usually needed to ensure proper healing.