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How do I fix my gummy smile?

Many people suffer with a gummy smile because most don’t think that there is anything that they can do about it. The reasons some people have a gummy smile are as follows:

1. The teeth never fully erupted and they are still partially tucked away under the gum line (Altered Passive Eruption)
2. The upper jaw is considerably larger in proportion to the upper lip and there isn’t enough lip to cover the gums when smiling, hence, revealing a large proportion of gum as compared to tooth size (Vertical Maxillary Excess)

The first problem can be easily treated with a simple gum procedure called a “gum lift”. The second problem is more complex and may require complex jaw surgery. Generally speaking, in both cases, we would likely start with a gum lift and see if the patient is satisfied with the result. Usually people are happy with the results if they fall in the Altered Passive Eruption category. The results are immediate and you look like a new person right after the procedure. If someone has Vertical Maxillary Excess, then there is still a chance that a gum lift would lead to a satisfactory result. However, in some cases, jaw surgery (upper jaw) is necessary.

The way a gum lift works is that the upper (and sometimes lower) gums are scalloped and removed away from the tooth surface thereby revealing more pearly white tooth structure. As mentioned earlier, Altered Passive Eruption means the teeth never fully erupted and there is a LARGER PROPORTION OF GUM as you smile when compared to tooth structure (could be a ratio of, say, 2:1 of visible gum compared to visible tooth structure. After a gum lift, the PROPORTION of visible gum to tooth is corrected such that the ratio is more like 1:1 or even 1:2 (reversed) as compared to before the gum lift procedure. See some of our success stories on this website for examples.

Call us today for your GUMMY SMILE consultation at 416-225-GUMS (4867).

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