Gummy Smile

Do you feel like your smile shows an excessive level of gum tissue? A gummy smile is a common complaint among the men and women who seek the services of Hoss Abar, DDS, MSD, at Danville Orthodontics in Danville, California.


Gummy Smile Q & A

What is a gummy smile?

There is no clearly defined definition of a gummy smile, as the aesthetic appeal of any smile is a highly subjective matter. However, the general understanding of a gummy smile is one in which a significant amount of gum tissue shows on the upper gum line.

There have been studies to determine what amount of visible gum tissue is excessive, with varying results. At the end of the day, if you’re troubled by the appearance of your smile, then you have the right to take steps to bring your smile into better alignment with your personal aesthetic goals.

What causes a gummy smile?

A number of factors influence the positioning of your teeth, gum tissue, and lips. Some of the issues that can create a gummy smile include:

  • Teeth that are not fully erupted and remain partially covered with gum tissue
  • A short upper lip
  • Teeth that are short due to wear or genetics
  • Gum tissue that is larger or longer than normal
  • An upper lip that moves more than normal during speech or smiling
  • Overgrowth in the upper jaw

A great smile requires a balance of proportions, and if there are any irregularities in your teeth, jaw, lips, or gum tissue, a gummy smile can result.

What can be done to change a gummy smile?

Every case is unique, and Dr. Abar works with you to determine the best way to resolve your specific areas of concern. In some cases, braces are all that’s needed to realign teeth and correct the amount of gum tissue displayed when you smile.

For some, laser gum contouring is the best way to reshape the gumline and improve the aesthetics of your smile. In other cases, a surgical procedure can remove excess gum tissue. It’s even possible to surgically alter the position of your upper lip to cover more gum tissue when smiling.

The first step in addressing a gummy smile is a complete and accurate diagnosis. Dr. Abar can examine the positioning of your teeth, lips, gum tissue, and bone structure to help you determine the best path forward.

Schedule an appointment today to learn more about your options. You can set up your visit online or by phone.


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  • Danville Orthodontics 530 La Gonda Way, Suite A Danville, CA 94526

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