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You’ve been feeling self-conscious about your gumline for a while, and you finally decided to do something about it. After a consultation with your cosmetic dentist, they suggested gum recontouring treatment. It’s an in-office procedure that requires one visit, so you’re feeling confident that it could be right for your grin. Before you commit to a date for the procedure, you want to learn a bit more about recovering from gum recontouring. Keep reading as your cosmetic dentist in Houston discusses the length of recovery and what you’ll need to do.

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What Exactly Is Gum Recontouring?

Gum recontouring is a procedure that reshapes your gumline. The process of gum recontouring involves cutting away or removing excess gum tissue around your teeth. If you have gum recession, the procedure is about restoring gum tissue.

In many cases, gum recontouring is an elective procedure. This means it isn’t medically necessary. Instead, it’s done to improve the look of the gums, teeth, or smile. But there may be times when your dentist recommends this treatment for oral health reasons, such as if you have periodontal disease. It may also be done to prepare a patient to get porcelain veneers or a dental crown.

How Long Is the Recovery?

Gum recontouring involves little downtime, but complete healing might take days or weeks, depending on the extent of the surgery. You may have to limit some activities for a day or two based on how you feel and any tenderness you may have.

Many dentists perform the procedure with a soft-tissue laser, so the removal of the excess gum tissue is painless. Lasers are far more precise than the sharpest medical scalpel, which enables them to make incredibly accurate incisions. This reduces inflammation and makes healing easier.

Used correctly, advanced medical lasers may have the effect of cauterizing their own incisions. This makes infection less likely and since it is one of the persistent risks of many procedures, lasers facilitate great postoperative health.

What Should You Do for Proper Recovery?

Since your gums and mouth will likely feel sensitive or tender at first, you’ll want to eat soft foods for about 2-3 days after the procedure. This might include items such as soup, yogurt, applesauce, gelatin, eggs, or cheese.

Avoid aspirin because it can cause bleeding, but Tylenol or Advil are usually okay. Brush your teeth very carefully as directed by your dentist until you are fully healed. You’ll typically have a follow-up appointment a few days or a week after the procedure.

Your dentist will check your gums to monitor how you’re healing and look for signs of an infection. They may prescribe an antibiotic mouth rinse to reduce the risk of infection. Signs of infection include increased pain and swelling and discharge from the gums.

In most cases, recovering from gum recontouring does not take long, and discomfort is minor. After a week, you will have a much better idea of how your new smile will ultimately look!

About the Author

Dr. Mark Gray has been working hard for Houston smiles since the 1980s. He earned his dental doctorate from the University of Texas Dental School in Houston, is a member of the American Dental Association, and continues to advance his skills as a Faculty Club member with Spear Education. If you are interested in gum recontouring, Dr. Gray utilizes a soft-tissue laser for your comfort and a swift recovery. Schedule a cosmetic consultation on his website or call 281-493-9395.