FAQ - glossory

Check out how your teeth and mouth change in every stage of life. Learn more what those dental words mean.

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Is Gummy smile related to plastic surgery?

This procedure was first described in the plastic surgery literature in 1973 and was recently published in the dental literature. 
"It is important to establish the etiology responsible for the excessive gingival display."


How can a cosmetic dentist fix my gummy smile?

In some cases, if your tooth eruptions are abnormal, and your teeth are small in comparison to your gums, you may seek treatment options from a cosmetic dentist. They can add porcelain dental caps to your visible teeth, which will correct your gum-to-tooth ratio. These caps can also improve the alignment and coloring of your teeth. Crowns, veneers, caps, and invisible braces are just a few examples of ways a cosmetic dentist can improve your smile.

What factors can lead into having a gummy smile?

A Gummy smile can be caused by:

- Having small sized teeth relative to the height of the gum visible, due to genetic factors or excessively worn down teeth.
- Having a short upper lip, otherwise known as high lip line.
- A hyperactive lip elevator muscle.
- Vertical overgrowth of the upper jaw bone, a genetically determined skeletal deformity.
- Teeth which have suffered from altered passive eruption.
- A combination of two or more of the above factors.

If you present to us seeking treatment for a gummy smile, we will first ascertain the cause of your gummy smile. Identifying the correct cause of the gummy smile is the only way to correctly treat a gummy smile.

What is a gummy smile?

In simple terms, a gummy smile is when one smiles, he or she instead of showing a lot of white dazzling teeth, they show a lot more of the pink gum tissue!

In dental terms, for an aesthetic smile, it’s generally agreed that we should have 1 or 2 mm of gum tissue visible when we smile.  A gummy smile is when more than 2mm of gum tissue is on display when a person smiles.

In most of the cases; as long as the height of the teeth is much more than the pink gum when a person smiles or talks, it is acceptable to people. But, when this ratio changes in favor of more pink gum showing than the white teeth it can become unattractive, resulting in some people trying to improve their gummy smile.


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