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A gummy smile is a term used when a person’s smile shows an excessive display of gum tissue or any amount of tissue over three to four millimeters. Some patients can feel incredibly self-conscious when they smile because of this, but they don’t want to go under the knife to correct it for many reasons.
In the past, surgery was the only treatment option for shortening the gums and making the teeth appear longer. However, today’s dental patients can find relief in altering their gums’ appearance without undergoing invasive surgery or orthodontic treatment.
What Causes a Gummy Smile?
The way your smile looks is genetic, from the shape of your teeth to the appearance of your gum tissue. Determining the underlying cause for your gums to extend more than they should be will help your dentist dictate the best treatment option to make the appropriate corrections.
The most common reasons behind a gummy smile are:
- A short upper lip caused by your genetic makeup
- Naturally small teeth
- Excessive gum tissue caused by genetics
- Tooth wear from grinding your teeth
- Overactive smile caused by hyperactive top lip muscles
A Gingivectomy is a standard surgical procedure to remove excess gum tissue to correct a gummy smile. If the thought of invasive gum surgery has prevented you from correcting your gum issues in the past, there are other less extreme options for effectively correcting your smile. Your dentist can perform many of these nonsurgical treatment options in less than an hour with no downtime required.
While you may be more familiar with Botox as a means for correcting sagging skin and wrinkles, it’s also a valuable tool for fixing issues with the upper lip that can cause a gummy smile. One of the most effective treatments for correcting your smile is by having your dentist inject Botox directly into the upper lip muscles. A gummy smile can be quickly and completely corrected with this safe and cost-effective treatment option.
With results lasting anywhere from three to six months on average with minimal recovery, Botox is an attractive treatment option for many patients. This procedure is only a temporary fix for the problem, so patients will have to continue returning for further injections every so often to preserve the appearance of their smile.
Dental Laser Treatments
For a more permanent solution to a gummy smile, dental laser treatments are a practical option. This is the most popular solution for gummy smiles, eliminating excess gum tissue without invasive surgery. Also known as crown lengthening, dental laser treatments are a cutting-edge technology used to remove excess gum tissue. This pain-free experience is so gentle that it doesn’t require anesthetics to numb the mouth before treatment.
Porcelain Veneers For Adding Length
Suppose the leading cause of your gummy smile results from extensive tooth wear that has caused your gum-to-tooth ratio to become disproportionate. In that case, porcelain veneers may be your ideal solution. Your dentist will start by pushing the affected teeth back up into the correct position with periodontal crown lengthening. Any lost tooth structure will then be restored with porcelain veneers to achieve a beautiful and long-lasting smile. Veneers are a great way to correct other smile imperfections like chips, cracks, stains, and minor crowding.
Don’t Love Your Smile?
Aubrey Baudean DDS can quickly eradicate any fears or insecurities that a gummy smile may be causing by providing you with the stunning smile of your dreams. Our attention to detail offers a second-to-none patient experience. Call our Marrero office today to schedule a consultation appointment and be one step closer to your dream smile.