Your smile is one of your greatest assets. Research shows that people who smile more are happier and healthier — they even tend to come off as more attractive and successful. But when you have a smile you’re less than confident in, it’s hard to show off your grin (and reap all the health benefits).
Our team at Mamkin Dentistry Aesthetic & Restorative Center in Ridgewood, New York, has dedicated their practice to giving you a smile that’s dazzling inside and out. We know how frustrating and defeating smile problems can be, so we offer a wide range of services to address cosmetic concerns from as many angles as possible.
If you thought your teeth were the only things that could wreck your smile, you haven’t heard about gingival displays, more commonly known as gummy smiles.
In this post, we dive into what a gummy smile is and how we can help you fix it.
Everyone flashes a bit of bright pink gums when they smile or open their mouth to talk, but with a gummy smile, you show a bit more than you’d like.
There’s no exact definition of a gummy smile, and it’s largely a matter of personal aesthetic, but generally speaking, your smile is considered gummy if you bare 3-4 millimeters of gumline.
Your perception of your gumline can be affected by how you move your lips when you smile, the angle of your jaw, and the height and shape of your teeth.
Gummy smiles can affect virtually anyone, and they usually stem from a few different factors. Here’s a closer look at the most common causes.
Often we can trace your gummy smile back to your childhood. The time when your adult teeth come in is crucial, and it’s where many problems begin. If your gums covered more of your teeth surfaces when they first came in (a condition called passive eruption), it may have contributed to your smile problems.
Teeth or gumlines that grew in too far or extra long upper jawbones can also cause a gummy smile later in life.
If you have a shorter, tighter upper lip, you could expose more gum than normal when your lips move. Similarly, if your lips are hypermobile, your smile can turn gummy.
Some medications (namely those that prevent seizures, suppress the immune system, or treat high blood pressure) cause your gums to grow too much around your teeth. Not only is gum overgrowth a cosmetic problem, but you could also wind up with periodontal disease.
The only good news about a gummy smile is that you’re not stuck with it. We can address this cosmetic issue in a few different ways depending on how severe your situation is.
We carefully review your oral health history and thoroughly examine your gumline before recommending one (or more) of the following treatments.
One of the fastest and easiest ways to address a gummy smile is to turn to our cosmetic dentistry services. For example, strategically placed crowns and veneers can lengthen your teeth and improve your tooth-to-gum ratio.
You’ve undoubtedly heard of Botox treatments for wrinkles, but they’re much more versatile than you may believe.
In fact, Botox injections treated crossed eyes, eye twitching, and even excessive sweating before they started tackling signs of aging. When injected in small doses by an experienced provider, Botox has a temporarily paralytic effect — which is great news for hypermobile lips.
Regular Botox injections can stop the elevator muscles in your lips from contracting and keep your gumline hidden from view.
If your gummy smile stems from issues with your teeth’s position or the length and structure of your jawbone, we can correct it with orthodontic appliances. Depending on your needs, we can recommend traditional braces or Invisalign® clear aligners to gradually reposition your teeth and jaw and ultimately restore your smile.
The orthodontic route may not be the fastest option, but you get the added benefit of addressing other underlying oral health issues, guaranteeing a smile that looks good and stays healthy for the long haul.
Sometimes, your gummy smile requires surgery to remove excess gum, correct jawbone issues, and/or reposition your lips. We only recommend surgery in extreme cases and exhaust our more conservative options first.
If you have more questions about your treatment options, don’t hesitate to call our friendly staff at 718-736-2785 or use our online booking tool to request a consultation today.