A frenulum is a small muscle that attaches your lips to gums. The band of tissue around it is called a frenum. When those tissues are overly thick, wide, short, or even too long, it may cause excessive pulling and problems such as creating space between your two front teeth or causing gum recession.
Since gum recession and tooth misalignment can lead to gum problems and appearance issues, dentists and even orthodontists often refer their patients with unhealthy frenum attachments to a periodontist for a procedure called a frenectomy, a common procedure that can be performed on patients of all ages.
A frenectomy is a simple procedure that your periodontist performs in the office using local anesthesia to numb the area. Using either a scalpel or laser, your periodontist reduces the pull of the frenum easily and quickly. Many times, the area does not even require stitches.
Most patients report only mild discomfort and fast healing with this procedure. Most of the time, patients report that it feels like a pizza burn for a day or two. Although patients will receive specific post-op instructions to promote optimal healing, patients typically have little downtime after a frenectomy in terms of function.
Having a frenectomy can help to prevent recession, maintain normal front tooth spacing, and even improve speech. If your dentist has recommended a frenectomy, contact us today for an appointment.