What Causes a Gummy Smile?
Before deciding on how to treat excessive gum tissues and find a gummy smile treatment option, it’s important to figure out why it is that your smile looks “gummy.” In most situations, it’s caused by one or a combination of the following anatomical conditions:
- Excessive gum tissue/low gumlines — It’s possible that the natural margin of your gingiva are further down on the tooth, hiding a larger surface area of tooth enamel below them.
- Hyperactive lip muscles — Sometimes our upper lip naturally tightens more than we would like, revealing the gums underneath. As we get older, this usually tends to decrease.
- Misalignment of the teeth and jaws — Atypical biting patterns or jaw development can cause situations where the upper front teeth close down into an overbite or overjet, where the gingiva over the roots of these teeth tends to protrude in a way that the upper lip doesn’t naturally close over them.
- Worn teeth — Chronic clenching and grinding habits can cause teeth to wear down, making them look short and flattened. Consequently, it looks as if there are more gums than teeth, due to the amount of attrition that has taken place.
Fast and Effective Gummy Smile Treatment
Depending on what your diagnosis is, Roberts Dental offers a number of gummy smile treatments to help you enjoy a fuller, more confident smile. Dr. Jan or Warren Roberts may recommend one of the following:
Laser Gum Recontouring
Safely recontour your gumlines to reveal the hidden tooth surfaces underneath. Traditionally, gummy smile treatment, including recontouring, required more invasive and surgical treatments. Laser gum recontouring provides immediate results with little downtime. We carefully shape new margins, “re-framing” your smile, so that the teeth appear fuller across the front of it.
Botulinum Toxin Injections
As with other parts of the face, cosmetic injectables such as “Dysport” or “Botox” can relax the muscles, causing them to lay smoother and releasing the tension below your skin. Applying botulinum toxin into the muscles of the upper lip can help it to rest lower when you smile or laugh, naturally covering the gums. Drs. Roberts are both highly experienced providing gummy smile treatment and botulinum toxin injections; through their teaching organization, the Pacific Training Institute for Facial Aesthetics, they teach other dentists and physicians on the therapeutic and cosmetic uses of botulinum toxin.
Orthodontics or Orthognathic Surgery
When natural anatomy is fighting against you, it may be necessary to set things straight again. Using braces (or even surgery in some situations) can help to reposition the teeth so that they close against one another in a more efficient manner. Bringing the upper front teeth back into alignment provides less distance for the upper lip to stretch over, allowing it to close over the gum tissues more easily.
Learn more about gummy smile treatment in Tsawwassen, BC; schedule your dental consultation at Roberts Dental with Dr. Jan Roberts! Call 604-943-3343.