A gummy smile is something many people feel self-conscious about their entire lives.
If you have a gummy smile, you might be embarrassed to smile or laugh. When you do smile, you might move your mouth in such a way as to hide your gums. You might even hold your hand in front of your mouth.
No one should have to live scared of their smile.
The good news is that those who have a gummy smile aren’t without hope. A gummy smile can be improved, and the difference in your confidence can be enormous.
At Silicon Valley Dental Associates in Sunnyvale, California, we love guiding patients through this process. Here’s how we can help.
With an ideal smile, your upper lip stops about 0-2 mm above your teeth. With a so-called gummy smile, though, a larger than average amount of gum tissue is exposed. This can create an unbalanced look when it comes to your facial proportions.
Too much gum tissue covering the teeth is the primary cause of a gummy smile. In this case, your teeth are normal size, but you see less of them because of the extra gum tissue. In fact, your teeth look short.
In other cases, the upper lip rises higher than it should and exposes more of your gums.
A gummy smile isn’t usually a medical or functional concern. It’s most often an aesthetic concern for someone who wants their smile to look better.
One of the most common treatments for a gummy smile is a gum lift, or gingivectomy. During this procedure, your dentist removes a portion of your gum tissue, which moves your gumline higher and reduces how much gum people see when you smile.
After this procedure, you can expect some mild swelling and tenderness for a few days. You should see the full results in about a week.
A Botox® injection into your upper lip can also relax the muscles in your lip, which can reduce how high your lip goes when you smile. This effect can last 4-6 months before you need another treatment to maintain it.
Depending on the specifics of your situation, lip lowering surgery or jaw surgery might also be an option. These procedures are more invasive, and the healing process takes longer.
When you’re ready to take action regarding your gummy smile, call us at Silicon Valley Dental Associates or schedule your consultation online. Contact us today and we can have you on your way to a better smile — and more confidence!