A smile has the power to brighten up a person’s face. But what if smiling makes you feel self-conscious?
A gummy smile is when you have excess gum tissue visible when you smile, which can look bad in pictures and can even make a person appear less friendly or genuine. A gummy smile can also draw attention away from a set of stunning teeth or an otherwise charming smile.
In the past, dentists would recommend gum surgery to correct a gummy smile. Today, there are non-invasive treatments that can temporarily reduce it.
Read on and find out more.
What Causes a Gummy Smile?
There are three main causes of gummy smiles:
- Inconsistencies in tooth development. How a tooth grows can contribute to a gummy smile, and some researchers have confirmed this to be a hereditary condition.
- Lip shape. If your upper lip is short or thin, they can reveal more of your gums when you smile.
- Medications. Gingival hyperplasia is an illness that contributes to the excessive growth of the gums around the teeth, and certain medications can also induce this side effect.
People with gummy smiles can be very self-conscious when having their photos taken or when they need to smile back at someone as a sign of courtesy. Thus, it can diminish their self-confidence and spontaneity, especially when it comes to interacting with others.
Fortunately, there’s a quick and easy way to improve the appearance of a gummy smile.
Dermal Fillers for Gummy Smiles
Contrary to popular belief, surgical treatment isn’t the only way to address a gummy smile. Injectable dermal fillers, for example, are a non-surgical and less expensive alternative.
Dermal fillers can be just as effective in improving the appearance of a gummy smile, provided that they’re administered by a certified and experienced provider. These fillers can be injected into the lips to subtly plump them up, thus resulting in more coverage for prominent gums and reducing their appearance when you smile.
Do note that for optimum results, providers usually combine dermal fillers and Botox® to address a gummy smile. Botox can relax the muscles on the upper lip, allowing it to lengthen slightly and cover up more of the gums (this is sometimes called a lip flip).
Best of all, neither Botox nor dermal fillers require downtime, unlike gum surgery. However, keep in mind that injectables are a temporary solution, and that they last up to 3 months, depending on how fast your body can metabolize them.
So, if you’d like to maintain your results, you may need to come in for touch-ups later on.
Injectable dermal fillers are a great, nonsurgical alternative for improving the appearance of gummy smiles. They can plump up a short or thin upper lip, thus covering up more of the gums and giving you a better-looking smile – without making your lips look overdone.