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Crown Lengthening

Crown Lengthening

Crown lengthening is a surgical procedure that exposes a greater amount of tooth structure. This process is performed to allow a dental crown to be fitted and thus restore the tooth’s structure and strength. Crown lengthening is achieved by making an incision into the gum tissue. Following this, part of the circumference of the alveolar bone is removed.

Indications for this procedure:

  1. Root fracture.
  2. Crown fracture leading to inadequate tooth length remaining for a crown.
  3. Perforation of the tooth root.
  4. Inadequate crown length due to tooth wear.
  5. Below the gum decay on the root surface of the tooth.

Contra-indications for crown lengthening

  1. Smoking is a contra-indication to most gum surgeries including crown lengthening.
  2. Thin gum tissue.
  3. Poor oral hygiene.
  4. Bone loss that could cause exposure between the roots of a molar tooth due to crown lengthening taking place.
  5. Unfavourable crown to root ratio being created by crown lengthening. This could mean that the crown becomes longer than the root following the surgery.
  6. Front teeth with long clinical crowns.
  7. An unrestorable tooth after surgery.

Before we carry out crown lengthening surgery we will take impressions, x-rays, and photos of your teeth. We also provide you with a mock-up model so that you can see how the final crown of the tooth will look before we begin any treatment.

Types of crown lengthening surgery available at Pearl Dental Clinic

  1. Reducing gum tissue (gingivectomy) using laser gum surgery.
  2. Apically repositioned gum surgery. This is carried out by our specialist periodontist (specialist in gum treatment).
  3. Apically repositioned gum surgery with bone reduction. This is also carried out by our specialist periodontist (specialist in gum treatment).
  4. Forced root eruption with orthodontics.
  5. Forced root eruption with surgery.

Crown lengthening surgery risks

  1. Small black triangles appearing between teeth.
  2. Rebound of gum tissue. The distance between soft tissue margin and crest of the bone is genetically determined, so soft tissue will re-grow to its genetically predetermined height in relation to bone.
  3. Change in colour pigment of gum. Although this will be minimal.
  4. Transient tooth mobility.
  5. Root sensitivity. The root can become sensitive once exposed and may need a crown or veneer.
  6. Gingival recession, as gum tissue can recede post gum surgery.
  7. Root resorption.

During your consultation we will inform you of alternatives to crown lengthening surgery such as orthodontic tooth extrusion or extraction of the tooth. A dental implant or a dental bridge is a good way to replace missing teeth.

Instructions that you should follow after periodontal crown lengthening surgery

  1. Rest your mouth for the first 3 hours.
  2. Apply ice packs to your face for at least 1 hour.
  3. Eat a soft diet for the first 24 hours.
  4. Favour the opposite side of the mouth for 1 week.
  5. Brush and floss except in the treated area.
  6. Expect swelling, some bleeding, and some pain post-operatively.
  7. Take over the counter painkillers as directed by your dentist.
  8. Take prescribed antibiotics or use antiseptic mouthwash as prescribed.
  9. Call the practice if you have any concerns.
  10. Come back to see us for a review 10-14 days post surgery for us to remove any remaining sutures.

At Pearl Dental Clinic, for those that suffer from dental anxiety, we offer Conscious IV Sedation to help patients feel more relaxed during crown lengthening treatment.

A full treatment plan will always be provided before any work begins. Furthermore, our fees are clearly published on our website, therefore, there are no hidden costs.

We also provide 0% Finance on most treatments allowing you to spread the cost over a period that suits you.


Pearl Dental Clinic is open 7 days a week from 9am to 10pm. You can book an appointment by calling us on 0203 750 5300 or emailing us or also by booking an appointment online.


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