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Gingivectomy is a surgical procedure to remove (resect) diseased or excess gum tissue. The main purpose of this surgery is to improve the appearance of your smile and/or reduce periodontal pockets where bacteria can grow and cause infection.

In some cases, a gingivectomy procedure may also be used to prepare your teeth for other cosmetic procedures, such as veneers or crowns. The procedure may take 30 minutes to 1 hour according to the gum tissue that is going to be removed. But if the work involves limited teeth, then it may need just one session.

Many people confuse crown lengthening procedures with gingivectomy. So, before discussing gingivectomy in detail, let us discuss their differences in detail.

Gingivectomy Vs Crown Lengthening

The main difference between gingivectomy and crown lengthening is that gingivectomy is a procedure to remove the diseased or excess gum tissue while crown lengthening is a procedure to expose more of the tooth so that a new crown can be placed.

Gingivectomy is also called gingival recontouring while crown lengthening is also called osseous recontouring.

Gingivectomy can be done for cosmetic reasons as it can improve the appearance of your smile. On the other hand, crown lengthening is done for functional reasons as it can help in placing a new crown.

Gingivectomy is typically performed using a scalpel or laser. Your dentist or periodontist will numb your gums before the gingivectomy incision.

The type of instrument (that is scalpel tool or gingivectomy laser) used will depend on the extent of the gum tissue that needs to be removed. A scalpel may be used for larger areas, while a laser gingivectomy can be used for smaller areas or to remove tissue more precisely. The dentist may even place a suction tool over your mouth to help keep the area clean and dry during the procedure.

After the gum tissue has been removed, your dentist will then smooth out the rough edges of your gums using a scalpel or laser. This step is important to prevent further irritation or infection of the gums.

Finally, your dentist will apply a dressing or suture the gums closed if necessary. 


Gingivectomy is recommended when the patient is having gun recession due to:

  • Gum injury
  • Bacterial infections
  • Gum diseases such as gingivitis
  • Aging