Correcting a gummy smile

A beautiful smile lights up the face instantly. No doubt about it. A few decades ago seeking resource to cosmetic dentistry for improving a smile and for aesthetic purposes was unthinkable to the common man. Not any more. New technology has made cosmetic dentistry more popular than ever, where dentists transform smiles using the latest expertise.

These techniques are confidence boosters, are hassle-free and most importantly very affordable, you don’t have to shell out a king’s ransom for a megawatt grin. Nor do you have to bear uncharitable remarks from others about your discolored, crooked or buck teeth or a smile which shows prominent gums, for all this is correctable.

Discolored, yellowish teeth can be easily whitened by in-house bleaching at the dentist’s office or by using whitening strips and bleaching kit provided by the dentist. Read the post for more details. A simple, inexpensive and a healthy way to get pearly, white and dazzling teeth is to eat apples, carrots and strawberries. They act as nature’s own toothbrushes and whiteners on your teeth. Sure, they don’t whiten the teeth instantly, but the effect will be obvious after a few days of regular consumption. 

gummy smileA gummy smile is one where the gums outsize the teeth, making your teeth appear shorter and the gums more prominent. Or it could be that the gum line is not symmetrical with the teeth.

If you have a gummy smile you may feel self-conscious to smile or laugh freely with others. You need not live with it. So if it’s bothering you, ask your dentist about the corrective techniques. Your dentist may suggest crown lengthening or the use of laser to resize the gums which is a painless and fast healing procedure. Read about it here.

Addendum: One of the commenters, Jeni had mentioned the use of Botox for treating a gummy smile. To elaborate more on this, I'd like to cite a  PubMed study about this procedure

A patient, who exhibited excessive gingival display or had a gummy smile and was unwilling to undergo Orthodontic treatment and apprehensive about surgical procedures, was injected with  Botulinum toxin type-A as an alternative treatment approach. 

Two weeks post treatment; on follow up examination, improved results were seen without any side effects. As a result, an attractive and confident smile was perceived by the patient. The results were extremely satisfactory for both the patient and the orthodontist. 

Even though Botox has a transitory effect, six months post treatment the gummy smile was still seen to be within the normal range. Hence, depending on the cause and the needs of the patient, this treatment approach could well be used as an alternative procedure for faster and minimally invasive treatment of gummy smile.

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  1. wow! thank you for that.. the thought of laser gum removal frightened me seriously!

  2. Anonymous9:04 PM

    This link shows some before and after for procedures like this. This dentist is in Woodbury, MN and is called Montgomery Dental Care.

  3. Anonymous1:48 PM

    This might sound crazy, but sometimes Botox can be used to treat a gummy smile! Injections are made to make the top lip go down a little bit, to cover up more of the gums.

  4. ...Correcting a gummy smile...

  5. Thanks for the excellent information on cosmetic dentistry.

  6. Anonymous11:08 PM

    Hi Aparna:

    Thanks for participating in this week’s Carnival of Family Life, hosted by Jen at Diary of 1. Be sure to drop by tomorrow, April 28, 2008, and check out some of the many wonderful articles submitted this week!

  7. Anonymous7:16 PM

    The gummy smile procedure is an excellent and minimally invasive solution to the extensive self-confidence problems that many people endure from a gummy smile. The unique technique that I have employed in my office on hundreds of patients has had very impressive results and relatively short healing / recovery times.

    If you would like to learn more please visit my website:

  8. Anonymous8:39 AM

    Many of my patients not only undergo a complete transformation of their smile but the impact on their self-confidence and personal life is tremendous. Usually prior to treatment my gummy smile patients do not feel comfortable smiling–they cover their mouth to hide the “gumminess” of their smiles, and this causes them to supress their emotions. After treatment, however, the difference is huge. Patients are often surprised by how truly happy they become when can express their emotions more naturally with a beautiful, proportionate smile.

  9. Anonymous1:27 AM

    what if you have a gummy smile and a receding gumline?

  10. Anonymous7:58 PM

    A gummy smile can be corrected by orthodontic treatment, periodontal surgery, jaw surgery, or a combination of these procedures. In general, active treatment time with orthodontic appliances ranges from 1 to 3 years. The actual time depends on the growth of the patient's mouth and face, the cooperation of the patient, and the severity of the problem. Custom-made appliances are designed by the orthodontist according to the problem being treated. They may be removable or fixed (cemented and/or bonded to the teeth),
    and made of metal, ceramic or plastic. By placing a constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, braces can slowly move teeth through their supporting bone to a new desirable position.

  11. In response to the "if you have a gummy smile and a receding gumline" comment -- there are some techniques -- for example the lip lowering treatment that I developed -- that in many cases can still be performed with an excellent result in spite of the receding gumline. This is not to say that I am not concerned about patients with a receding gum line or other signs of periodontal disease. I discuss proper hygiene and prevention of periodontal disease with all of my patients.

    Of course every case is different and the treatment plan must be customized to each individual patient’s situation. This is why we recommend that interested patients email us photos of their case so that we can provide customized feedback. To do this go to my website: and click on the contact form or call 310 657 0503.

    Patients from all over the world have come to my office in Beverly Hills to correct their gummy smile with my lip lowering procedure. We make this process very simple and efficient, often only requiring 2-3 days stay in LA.

  12. Gummy smile can also be corrected by orthodontics or gum surgery.

  13. Gummy smile can be embarrassing, but fortunately there are several options to correct: periodontal surgery, orthodontics or lip tying procedure.

  14. Anonymous9:19 AM

    Best treatment u can get is a dental cosmetic surgery.
    it will be permanent and wont be painful

  15. unknown9:24 AM

    Having gums that have grown too far down onto the tooth is not youthful. I worked for a periodontist who performed surgeries on such people and the results were amazing!! It changed people's lives, honestly. Gummy smiles are not attractive at all. In fact, I think that it absolutely takes away from someone who could be very attractive without the extra gums. This procedure is commonly known as cosmetic crown lengthening or crown elongation and truly has dramatic results!

  16. I found a source in the midwest to have this done. You no longer have to travel to California.

  17. Laser dentistry has now evolved to be able to treat embarrassing gummy smiles.

  18. For a receding gumline I prefer to use conservative methods such as orthodontic appliances instead of surgery. Laser treatments also fork for gummy smiles.

  19. I have seen one or two cases of the gummy smile. Orthodontic operations does help in solving such state. It is a painless procedure.

  20. That gummy smile procedure is perfect for people with big teeth. It's amazing because it doesn't look plastered on the gums at all.


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