What is a Gummy Smile?
Gummy smile is the excessive amount of gum tissue that my show in full smile. At Bucktown Dental in Chicago, we treat gummy smiles.
What Causes a Gummy Smile?
Gummy smiles occur for a variety of reasons
- Excessive gum tissue covering the upper teeth.
- Wear of the upper teeth with excessive eruption.
- Short upper lip that does not cover the gum and upper teeth.
- Hyperactive upper lip. Hyperactive muscles pull the lip high in full smile.
- Excessive height of the upper jaw.
How to fix gummy smile?
Fixing gummy smile depends on the cause. Before planning treatment, Dr. Elseweifi evaluates the following:
- The amount of gum tissue showing in smile.
- The lengths of the upper teeth
- The length of the upper lip and how it moves in smiling
- The vertical height of the upper jaw
Gummy smile treatment methods:
- Botox injection
- Cosmetic dentistry - crown lengthening & veneers
- Lip lowering surgery
Gummy smile Botox
Botox weakens the hyperactive muscles that pull the lip up . The weakened muscles would not pull the lip as high when smiling. Botox injection only gives temporary results that last for 3-4 months.
In addition to Botox, Dr. Elseweifi recommends Lip augmentation with dermal fillers. Lip augmentation benefits patient with thin lips. The combined injection gives the best results.
Gumy smile treatment by gum contouring
Gum contouring (crown lengthening) removes excessive gum tissue. Dr. Elseweifi uses laser to perform crown lengthening surgery. The gum contouring makes more of the teeth visible and looking longer. Crown lengthening works better when combined with lip lowering surgery.
For worn teeth, Dr. Elseweifi recommends restoring the teeth with veneers or crowns.
Lip lowering surgery for gummy smile
Lip lowering surgery (Lip re-positioning surgery treats gummy smile. The results of lip lowering surgery surgery are permanent. The surgery takes 45 minutes and only needs local anesthesia.
The surgery lowers the junction of the lip to the inside of the mouth. This restricts the muscle pull on the upper lip while smiling. The surgery has no other effects on facial expressions or speech.
Dr. Elseweifi does a reversible lip lowering prior to surgery. He sutures the lip at the planned position without doing any incisions. The patient can then check the lip position before the actual surgery.
Orthodontic braces are used to Intrude the upper teeth. The intrusion reduces gingival display.