Treatment options for a gummy smile

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A beautiful smile is more than a set of shiny, white teeth. The components of a beautiful smile include teeth that are shaped proportionately to your face and to each other. When the teeth look as if they are too small, or the amount of visible gum tissue seems to outweigh the teeth, the smile can appear “gummy”.

Often, patients are unaware that there are cosmetic options when it comes to the gummy smile. Sometimes, the gums can cover the portion of the tooth meant to be visible in the mouth. The gums can grow excessively in response to certain medications, allergic reactions, or orthodontic treatment. This excess gum tissue can have a dramatic impact on the overall smile.

Ideally, the gum tissue should be firmly attached to the roots of the teeth, but not covering the enamel. Just at the neck, or cervix of the tooth, the gum line begins and the tooth or clinical crown is visible. The junction where the roots of the teeth end and the clinical crown begins can be identified by the presence of enamel. When the smile appears gummy, often the gum tissue has concealed a portion of the clinical crown, or the enamel.

The goal of the cosmetic dentist is to address not only the teeth, but the structures around the teeth to create the most symmetrical and balanced smile possible. Tissue re-sculpting is an accepted method of achieving a harmonious smile. The dentist will determine the amount of tooth structure that should be visible, and then reshape the gum tissue to reveal the hidden surface area.

Tissue re-sculpting can be utilized to treat single teeth or multiple teeth. The procedure is useful in treating a variety of concerns:

  • Excessive, or gummy smiles (too much gum tissue, not enough tooth structure)
  • Uneven gum tissue (neighboring teeth appear asymmetrical)
  • Short, or square teeth (by revealing more enamel, teeth appear proportionately longer)
  • Dr. John M. Hucklebridge, your cosmetic dentist in Plano, is specially trained to evaluate your entire smile, not just the teeth. Tissue re-sculpting can instantly add symmetry and harmony to your smile. If you have noticed that your smile seems exceptionally “gummy”, schedule an appointment to discuss your cosmetic options today.