When a tooth has deep decay or a crack below the gum line, it will require exposing sound tooth structure to be properly restored. Your restorative dentist will recommend a surgical crown lengthening procedure to accomplish this prior to making the final restoration. This allows the restorative dentist to place a full-coverage crown with enough room for healthy gum tissue.
When I have a cracked tooth or deep decay why can’t my dentist just restore the tooth with a deeper restoration below the gum line?
The gum tissue health around a tooth is dependent on width from the bone level up to the restoration of about 3 millimeters. This zone must be provided, even when decay extends well below the gum line, to prevent gum infection and further bone loss. To accomplish that result a surgical procedure to create the “biologic width” is performed.
After an appropriate period of healing, the restorative dentist can complete the new crown preparation and ensure a healthy long-term result.