3 Good Reasons to Pay for Crown Lengthening

Crown lengthening is a common dental procedure. When performed by your qualified dental provider, you should see an increase in the long-term health of your teeth.

If your child’s dentist recommends crown lengthening, you can expect to pay between $1,000 and $4,000 for a complete-mouth procedure. There may be additional services required depending on your situation. Plan for extra costs, for services like cleaning and preparation.

In some cases, when the procedure is deemed medically necessary by a dentist, insurance companies will cover a portion of the cost. Get in touch with your insurance provider ahead of the procedure to find out what forms and documents they require.

What Is Crown Lengthening?

Crown lengthening, also know as gum contouring, is a common surgical procedure in which a dentist reshapes gum and sometimes bone tissue to expose more of the tooth. A dentist may recommend crown lengthening for cosmetic or medical reasons. (More on that below.)

The procedure takes about 30 minutes. The dentist will use local anesthesia to numb the area, so there’s little or no pain. Once the area is numb, the dentist will remove the excess tissue using a scalpel, laser, or electrically heated device.

How Do I Know if My Child Needs Crown Lengthening?

Again, a dentist may recommend crown lengthening for cosmetic or medical reasons. Reasons for crown lengthening include:

  1. Tooth decay below the gum line. When decay is hidden by the gums, the dentist may recommend crown lengthening to expose more of the tooth so he or she can place a filling.
  2. Too little tooth beyond the gum line to support a filling or crown. Sometimes, there’s so little tooth exposed that there’s no place to anchor a filling or crown adequately.
  3. Dissatisfaction with appearance. A person with a “gummy” smile may seek crown lengthening to make their teeth look larger.

boy smiling with dentist in chair

Can I Afford Crown Lengthening?

Your child’s crown lengthening cost depends on several factors, like:

  • How many teeth require lengthening
  • Where you live (dentists in different states, regions, and cities have different rates)
  • The expertise and experience of the person giving the surgery (a specialized dentist may cost more)
  • Whether the procedure is medically necessary or cosmetic

In cases where crown lengthening is used to facilitate a procedure treating tooth decay, your insurance provider will likely cover part of the cost. Insurance won’t cover any costs for a cosmetic procedure, but our Kool Smiles Kids Club partner dentists can work with you to find a financing option or payment plan that works for you.