Dr. Robert Levine on What is a Gummy Smile, and How Can It Be Treated?
“The benefits of treating a gummy smile are many. Generally we see either adults or even children in braces with excessive gingival display, i.e. a gummy smile. And frequently there’s something that patients think that they have short teeth, when in actuality they have long gums, meaning that they have excessive gingiva.
So in the treatment of this gummy smile, it’s a minimally invasive procedure done in one visit and by the end of the visit, the patient actually could see exactly how beautiful their smile is. Their teeth are longer. It’s a form of crown lengthening or tooth lengthening. Again with minimal discomfort after. And frequently we partner with our restorative colleagues in the adult patients that we treat to do porcelain veneers as well or some form of restorations that they now have a smile makeover. And they’re able to smile and it really changes their lives. So it’s really one of the very exciting things that I do as a periodontist is the treatment of a gummy smile.
So the benefit obviously is aesthetic improvement. The second is patients that do not treat a gummy smile with excessive gingival display, as they get older, they’re more prone to having periodontal disease because these areas have now become pockets and they just can’t clean them. So that’s the start of inflammation, periodontal disease, bone loss. So there is a functional benefit of having it treated, as well.”
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