Considerations Before Looking Into A Gum Lift Procedure

A gum lift is an incredible new advancement in cosmetic dentistry. The procedure, also known as crown lengthening, raises, sculpts and reshapes the gum line. Most people do it to achieve the appearance of longer or more symmetrical teeth. If you’ve ever thought you have a “gummy” smile or an uneven gum line, this procedure is definitely something to look into and speak to one of our dentists about.

Historically, gum lifts were first used to treat gum disease. Dentists started using them in the 1980s and around year 2000 is when they started to use them for cosmetic purposes.


To receive a gum lift, the condition of your tooth root must be substantial enough that exposing more of the tooth will not compromise the structure.

Many people in search of a gum lift were simply born with a large gums to teeth ratio. Others might seek it due to gum recession. Not only is gum recession unsightly, but it can also lead to serious dental problems like sensitivity, decay, and tooth loss.

Those who suffer from bruxism can also develop the appearance of a gummy smile because their teeth have been worn down, making their gums appear larger.

Having a small or thin upper lip can also contribute to the aesthetics of your gums. Women are more likely to have excess gum tissue — cosmetic dentists estimate 14 percent of women and 7 percent of men have excessive gingival exposure. Often, those with approximately 3 to 4 millimeters of visible gum tissue consider themselves to have a gummy smile.

A gum lift procedure is often done in conjunction with porcelain veneers and on the front teeth which are most visible.


Before the procedure, we will have a consultation with you to determine your smile goals and any limitations we might have. In this appointment we can use a pen to mark up your gums and show you where your new gum line will be.

The gum lift procedure, typically done in one appointment, begins with some local numbing of the soft tissue. Then when you are unable to feel the pain, we will begin to trim and reshape your gum tissue. This can be done with a laser or a surgical knife. We encourage the use of the laser as this procedure has a much faster recovery time.

In some cases, we will go even further and actually separate the gums from the bone, trim or shave down the bone and then stitch back your gums at a higher lever.

Unlike some other dental procedures, you don’t need to take several days off work or take heavy pain medications. Your gums may be tender, swollen, and sore immediately after but you should be able to eat and drink in no time. For most people, a mild pain reliever like ibuprofen is usually all that is needed.

It’s also wise to stick to soft, non-sticky and non-spicy foods for a few days just to be safe and allow your gums to heal without further irritation. We recommend gentle brushing and flossing for a couple weeks after the procedure. Using an antibacterial mouthwash can also be very helpful during this time period to fight infection.


  • Before you schedule a gum lift, take some time to speak to us about any concerns or fears you might have. While the risk of complications is low, problems can happen. If you tend to bleed heavily in other dental procedures or if your gums are prone to swelling, be sure to let us know so we can discuss the causes and minimization of those issues should you receive the lift. Allergies to medications and/or anesthesia can also causes complications in a gum lift.
  • Just as important as it is to consider the risks, it’s also important to explore the benefits and advantages of choosing to utilize this cosmetic procedure. Many people feel embarrassed about their smile and as the standards for a beautiful smile continue to rise, that discontent grows. Investing time and money in a great smile can improve your confidence. A well-done gum lift will make your teeth appear proportional and symmetrical. You don’t have to smile with closed lips or feel self conscious about your teeth!
  • Consider the financial investment. The price of a gum lift can vary drastically. If you only need to address a small area of the gums around one or two teeth, it will cost much The typical cost is estimated to be anywhere from $50 to $350 per tooth with a whole-mouth price of $1,000 to $3,000. Because it is a primarily cosmetic procedure, your insurance company is unlikely to cover the cost but it is still wise to submit prior authorization for the procedure to your insurance provider.
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  1. Shano mohammed says:

    Is this doable for someone who has crowns on their four front teeth? And how long will I have to wait after the laser gum lift to schedule a teeth whitening appointment?

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