Do you feel that when you smile you show a lot of gum? A gummy smile can actually make you feel self-conscious.
A gummy smile does not have a set of definition and it is mostly based on perception. As such, it varies from person to person. However, it has been shown that a smile will generally be seen as gummy when a gum tissue measuring about three millimeters or more is exposed.
There are several reasons why your smile shows excessive gum.
Gum Tissue Is Not the Only issue
Smiles look gummy in instances where the teeth, gum issues and the upper jaw are disproportionate â€" not in harmony with each other. The upper lips position also plays a part.
Causes of a Gummy Smile
Although there are several causes of a gummy smile, the most common ones include:
- Teeth that look short because of inadequate or incomplete eruption and remain partly buried within the gum tissue
- Teeth which are small when compared to the gums caused by heredities or wear
- A very short upper lip
- Long or enlarged gums that are referred to as gingival hypertrophy
- Vertical maxillary excess, which is an overgrowth of upper jaw that causes the gums to bulge out
The good news is that it is possible for a gummy smile to be fixed.
Well, the type of treatment will be determined by what is causing too much gingival display. The moment the dentists identify the source, they can then work on creating an attractive, healthy smile.
The following are some of the options for gummy smile correction:
In case the basic reason for too much gingival display is minor and is caused by the jaws or teeth, then sometimes orthodontics alone can be used move the bite into the proper position thus making the gums look less noticeable.
For minor to severe jaw protrusion, the most suitable option is either orthognathic or jaw surgery together with orthodontic therapy.
If the teeth are very short due to wear or genetics, then veneers or crowns can be used to make them look longer as well as improve the tooth-to-gum proportion.
In case the problem is excessive gum tissue, a periodontist can carry out a gingivectomy procedure which involves the removal of the excess gum tissue and reshaping it to allow more exposure of the teeth and enhance the appearance of your smile.
In case the teeth are not fully erupted, the appropriate course of action is crown-lengthening surgery. This procedure involves the removal of gum tissue and/or bone to allow more tooth exposure and also let the gums pull back to their proper position.
A proper diagnosis by an orthodontist is crucial before any fix can be prescribed.