Crown lengthening may be indicated when you have a broken or decayed tooth that requires a crown or bridge treatment but the remaining tooth is too short for placement and retention of the new prosthesis.
The treatment then requires surgery to increase the amount of undamaged tooth structure available to support and retain the crown or bridge. The gum tissue can then establish a healthy seal to the root surface because there would then be adequate space for the gum tissue to attach to the tooth. This is referred to as adequate biologic width.
The health benefits of crown lengthening include an increase in the length of the tooth above the gum line for better retention of crowns or bridges, and it enables the gum tissue to form a healthy seal around the tooth to minimize inflammation and prevent bone loss.
Choosing not to have a crown lengthening when recommended can pose some risks. It could prevent your dentist from placing a satisfactory crown or bridge. Your periodontal health may be compromised due to inadequate gum supporting the tooth. This inadequate biologic width can lead to inflammation and bone loss. This could all lead to premature loss of your crown or bridge with it coming off without warning.
If your dentist refers you to our office for this procedure, you will likely be seen first for an evaluation to discuss the details of the procedure. This may include coordinating treatment with your dentist.