A frenectomy is a procedure where a fibrous area of skin, known as the frenulum, is removed/cut by using either a laser or a scalpel. This procedure is to help stop or reduce the pulling of that area of the frenulum on the surrounding skin. Such pulling can cause recession of the gums or hold a gap between teeth. It is usually a simple procedure that lasts approximately 15 minutes or so. Bleeding is minimal, and the area may look temporarily black from the agent used to control any bleeding. The area should be mostly healed after 2 weeks following the procedure.

What to expect following a frenectomy:

To help with inflammation or any post-operative discomfort, Ibuprofen is strongly advised. If you have any Ibuprofen allergies, you may take whatever you normally take for pain management; however, do not take asprin.

As long as the frenectomy is not done in conjunction with a gingival graft in the same area, you need to stretch the area. These exercises must be done 3-5 times a day for 1 week. You can start these exercises 5 hours after procedure. Salt water rinses are recommended to help with the healing process provided the rinsing is NOT vigorous. Use clean hands and assure that your fingernails are short.

Exercise details:

  • Start 5 hours after the procedure; perform every 5 hours.
  • The lip:
    stretch — 5 light pull up (vertical) and out
    massage — 5 light rubs at fold (horizontal)

The lip should be stretched so the tissue does not re-attach. Sometimes a secondary procedure is necessary to ensure the appropriate result.

Please note: It is normal for the area under the lip to initially look brownish for a few days, then yellowish green before returning to pink. This is all part of the normal healing process.

Should you have any further questions, please contact the Landmark Dental team.