gum contouring

Sparkling white teeth are just part of what makes a smile beautiful and nice to look at. Those who are conscious of their smiles know all too well that the shape of the teeth is also important. If your teeth look small and stubby, or if your smile is showing too much gum, gum contouring may just be the right procedure for you.

What Is a Gummy Smile?

A gummy smile is a very subjective term for someone whose smile shows too much of the gums because the gum tissue extends well over the enamel. While not universally considered as unpleasant, those with gummy smiles are often self-conscious and tend to smile less, even if they have no other dental problems save for them having a gummy smile.

Just how “gummy” your smile is depends on four factors, namely:

  • Just how much gum tissue is displayed.
  • The size, as well as shape of your teeth.
  • The length of your upper lip, as well as how often it moves.
  • The vertical position of your upper jaw and teeth relative to its position in your skull.

How Gum Contouring Can Help

By removing some of the gum tissue, periodontists or dentists can help expose more of the enamel of the teeth. This procedure can then make the teeth look longer, your gums shorter and helping you be less conscious of your gummy smile.

The procedure is usually pain-free and dentists will only usually have to use a local anesthetic. Soreness is to be expected a few hours and even days after the procedure, but since the gums heal very quickly, they don’t really pose that much of a problem.There are also certain cases where along with the excess gum tissue, some bone may also have to be removed. This requires extensive anesthesia and the healing time is also much longer. You can also ask your dentist to use a laser, which is a more modern method that helps minimize the risk of infection, as well as bleeding and drastically shorten the recovery time.

Now, if you think that you’re suffering from a “gummy smile”, it’s best to check in with your dentist for confirmation.

Your dentist will have to examine your mouth, teeth, as well as gums to determine just how much of your gums are showing and if there are any other possible causes apart from it having naturally occurred.

Once the cause has been determined, you’ll then be presented with a list of possible treatment options, including:

  • Same-day laser treatments.
  • Surgical lip re positioning.
  • The use of braces to help move teeth to more ideal positions.
  • Gum contouring.
  • Re positioning of the bones via maxillofacial surgery.

Of the five, the most common would be laser treatments and gum contouring, both of which are also the most effective. However, if your dental specialist may recommend any one of the three other treatment options mentioned above.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, call Kemmet Dental Design at 701-852-4789 today. Learn more about the practice by visiting




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