A gummy smile is a smile that exposes far more gum tissue than is usual. While many people tend to expose a small portion of the gums while smiling, not every case is labeled a gummy smile.
There are various causes that can lead to a gummy smile, but there are several solutions for it. Although it is not a medical urgency, it can be a cause of low self-esteem for many.
What is a gummy smile?
Having the perfect smile is all about proportions. So in the book of aesthetic dentistry, a gummy smile is a smile that reveals beyond 4 mm of the gum tissue.
Exceeding this limit will make your smile look noticeably gummy. The perfect ratio would be 2 mm of gum tissue showing when smiling.
What causes a gummy smile?
Several conditions can make your smile gummy and more often than not it’s difficult to manage. Here are some of the main causes for this problem.
1- Overgrowth of gum tissue
This tops the list as the most prevalent cause. In some individuals, the gum tissue can grow beyond normal. As a result, the tissue covers a larger portion of the teeth making your teeth look smaller and your gums bulge. So when you smile, a larger area of the gums appears.
Many factors can trigger overgrowth of gum tissue. Genetics is a possibility and so are information and side effects to medications.
2- Hyperactive lip muscle
A hyperactive lip muscle is another cause. The lip muscle is a muscle that moves the area between the nose and the lips.
When this muscle is hyperactive, it raises the lips a little higher than is usual. As a result, it reveals a great portion of your gum tissue when smiling. The cause for this is purely genetics, but you can treat it at Dentakay.
3- The anatomy of your jaw
The last possible cause for a gummy smile is the way your jaw is shaped. Irregular alignments for instance, if your upper jaw is very far upfront, it will bring attention to your gums making smile gummy.
How to fix gummy smile
The field of dentistry that deals with reducing gum exposure when smiling or the overall gum appearance is gingival esthetics.
There are different treatments for a gummy smile. Typically, at Dentakay, before treatment, our dentists will evaluate your case to find the underlying cause for your gummy smile. The examination may include x-rays as well if your case is a bit complex.
Here are some of the most common methods used for treatment:
- Botox Injections: Botulinum toxin injections can be used to temporarily reduce the visibility of the gums when a person smiles. This treatment is minimally invasive and can be done quickly and easily by a qualified medical professional.
- Gum Contouring: This cosmetic dental procedure involves removing excess gum tissue to create a more proportionate smile. This can be done using a laser or traditional surgical methods.
- Orthodontic Treatment: Braces or clear aligners can be used to correct the position of the teeth and jaw to achieve a more balanced and harmonious smile.
- Lip Lowering Surgery: In some cases, a gummy smile can be caused by an overly short upper lip. Lip lowering surgery can be used to lengthen the upper lip and cover more of the gums when a person smiles.
- Jaw Surgery: If the gummy smile is caused by a protruding or overdeveloped upper jaw, jaw surgery can be used to reposition the jaw and create a more balanced facial profile.
It is important to consult with a qualified dental or medical professional to determine the best treatment options for your individual needs.
Celebrities with gummy smiles
Having a gummy smile is a very common thing. Many celebrities have had it at least for the beginning of their career before resorting to cosmetic dentistry to fix the issue.
Old photos of pop icon Halsey show that the star has had a gummy smile in the past. From the pictures it looks like her problem stems from a hyperactive lip muscle.
2- Gwen Stefani
Gwen Stefani is among the celebrities with a very noticeable gummy smile. The small size of her teeth indicate overgrowth of gum tissue is the source of her gummy smile. But she seems to have gotten gum contouring to correct the proportions of her smile. Gwen Stefani has also used braces to give her smile a makeover.
3- Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman’s smile was gummy possibly due to gum tissue overgrowth. Recent pictures of the talented actress indicate that she has opted for aesthetic dentistry to fix this issue.
We’re assuming she’s opted for gum contouring to fix her gingival smile and veneers to correct the shape of her teeth.
Having a gummy smile isn’t an urgent situation, but it is still a cause of concern for many. At Dentakay, we’re the only dental clinic to be a member of The Slow Dentistry Academy, an organization that increases the quality of treatment for the patient. We host some of Turkey’s most seasoned and skilled doctors in gingival aesthetics to give your smile what it needs.
To learn more about gingival smile treatments, contact our dental consultants in a free online consultation.