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Laser gum contouring is becoming more popular among patients who have an uneven gum line or gummy smile. The procedure allows dentists to reshape the gum line to produce a more pleasing aesthetic.


Today, the Novato, CA cosmetic dentist performs an increasing number of laser gum contouring treatments. The use of laser technology has made it easier to contour gum tissue with reduced risks and fewer side effects. In this blog, we’ll explain how laser gum contouring can be performed to improve the appearance of the smile.


What does the procedure involve?


Laser gum contouring involves the removal of a small amount of soft gum tissue to produce a uniform gum line or minimize the amount of gum tissue that shows when a patient smiles. To start the procedure, we’ll administer a local anesthetic to numb the gum tissue and prevent any discomfort during the treatment process.


Once you’re completely numb, the Novato, CA cosmetic dentist will use a dental laser to sculpt the gum line and create an attractive contour; this may involve the removal of gum tissue across the entire upper gumline or the removal of excess gum tissue from specific teeth. 


The entire process takes less than an hour. Once the gums have been reshaped to the desired aesthetic, the patient can return home.


How long does it take to recover?


The laser gum contouring procedure results in minimal side effects. Still, you may experience minor discomfort during the healing period. To reduce any pain, avoid spicy foods, foods and drinks that are heated or cooled to extreme temperatures, and foods that contain small seeds. An over-the-counter pain reliever can be used to treat any discomfort.


You should continue to brush and floss their teeth in the days after treatment. However, during the first few days after treatment, it is important to be as gentle as possible. Laser dentistry offers many benefits, including a minimal recovery time and few side effects. Other benefits are:

  • Less pain during and after treatment
  • Reduced degree of bleeding and swelling
  • Less chance of infection
  • Improved and even gum line
  • The gum line is more proportionate to the teeth
  • The ideal amount of gum tissue shows when you smile, laugh, or speak

The laser gum contouring procedure is commonly performed in combination with other dental procedures. Porcelain veneers may be applied to the front surface of the teeth to make them appear straighter, lengthen short teeth, or mask stains. Teeth whitening may be performed to make the teeth whiter. By choosing additional treatments, patients can achieve a total smile makeover.


If you’re thinking about a laser gum contouring procedure, contact cosmetic dentist Dr. Steven McConnell to arrange a convenient consultation. 


Left untreated, dental infections and periodontal disease will not only affect the appearance of your smile but can destroy your oral health. Neglecting routine at-home oral and professional care places you at greater risk for these conditions, and when you do try to “catch up” you may face complications that require complex dental work to restore the health and function of your smile. 

Make Preventive Care a Priority

Novato family dentist Dr. Steven McConnell teaches his patients that prevention is the key to maintaining a beautiful, healthy smile. By making your dental care a priority you can save you the future cost and embarrassment of dental disease.

One of our goals is to educate you about the best ways to avoid cavities and gum disease. Even the most consistent routine of brushing and flossing alone is not enough to maintain a healthy smile. Practicing good at-home oral hygiene is vital, but it must be paired with professional dental cleanings to be really effective.

As we eat, drink, and speak a sticky bacterial film called plaque coats tooth enamel and oral tissue. Flossing and brushing help to remove some plaque build-up but cannot eliminate it completely. The plaque that is not removed hardens into a substance called tartar. Tartar continues to build up on teeth, causing dental decay, gum disease, and eventually tooth loss unless it is removed through regular professional cleanings. 

Be Proactive with Oral Health Care

You can take control of your dental health by:

  1. Maintaining a proactive at-home cleaning schedule (to reduce daily plaque build-up)
  2. Seeing your dentist for semi-annual professional cleanings (to remove tartar and give you a “clean slate” for brushing and flossing).

Please Call for an Appointment

It is never too late to get back on track with your dental health routine. Start by scheduling a visit with the Novato family dentist for professional teeth cleaning to give yourself and your family the best possible chance for optimal oral health.

If you suffer from an overwhelming fear of dentists and dental procedures, you know how easy it is to miss regular appointments. Dental anxiety is a very common problem and affects millions of patients. Unfortunately postponing dental treatment almost always results in the need for invasive and costly treatment in the future.

Obviously, your comfort and well-being are of great importance to the Novato, CA sedation dentist. Our goal is to support your oral health by providing painless and efficient treatments. We use state-of-the-art technology and minimally invasive procedures that reduce your time in the chair and increase your discomfort.

But these factors alone may not give you the peace of mind you’re looking for when visiting your dentist. So what can you do to help alleviate this anxiety? Feeling a loss of being in control contributes to dental phobia. Here are three practical tips to help you feel more in control during your dental appointments and hopefully reduce your stress level.

  1. Communicate with your dentist – You may find it embarrassing to talk about your fear, but your dentist needs to be aware of your anxiety to take the necessary precautions during treatment.
  2. Agree on a signal – Patients are often afraid that their dentist won’t know when and if they are experiencing pain or anxiety, and this contributes to their fear. Agree to a signal with your dentist beforehand. A simple “stop” hand signal can be used to alert your dentist to your discomfort immediately.
  3. Ask about sedation – Sedation offers an excellent solution for many patients who would not otherwise be able to endure the treatment. Discuss the different types of sedation options available with your dentist before the appointment, so you know what to expect beforehand.

The best way to combat dental phobia, however, is to gather information beforehand. Your Novato, CA sedation dentist is always available for a consultation to discuss procedures and treatments to help you understand what your appointment will involve.

Please call our office to learn more anxiety-reducing tips!


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