When you flash your smile, you want white, bright teeth to be the first thing people notice, not your gums. If you feel like you’re displaying too much gum tissue and not enough teeth when you smile — a condition known as a gummy smile — the good news is that there is a solution.
That solution is called crown lengthening, and the team here at Baton Rouge Perio, including gum health experts Dr. Kenneth Markle and Dr. Jenny Herman, can make quick work of your gummy smile, putting the focus back on your teeth.
Here’s a look at how crown lengthening works.
A gummy smile is also known as excessive gingival display, and it occurs in about 10% of people between the ages of 20 and 30 in the United States.
In reality, it’s hard to put an exact number on this condition as it can be highly subjective. While some experts say that any gum display of more than 2 millimeters qualifies as a gummy smile, the fact is that only you can decide whether you feel your smile displays too much of your gums.
There are many reasons why you may have a gummy smile, but a short upper lip and gingival hyperplasia (too much gum tissue) are the primary culprits.
Just because you have a gummy smile, it doesn't mean that your teeth are shorter than normal — they just appear that way. Through crown lengthening, we clear away some of this excess gum tissue to expose more of your teeth (your crowns are the parts of your teeth that you see above your gum line).
To accomplish this, we use advanced laser technology to trim and reshape your gums so that the ratio between your teeth and gums is more proportionate. In more severe cases of excessive gingival display, we may also have to remove some bone. We can determine which approach is best for you during your evaluation.
We perform the crown lengthening procedure right here in our office, and it only takes us about an hour in most cases. Rest assured, we make you perfectly comfortable with local anesthesia so you won’t feel a thing as we reshape your gum line.
After your crown-lengthening procedure, we send you home with complete aftercare instructions. You may feel some soreness in your gums, and you’ll need to use extra care when brushing, rinsing, and flossing your teeth while your gums heal.
The good news is that gums heal quickly and you’ll be smiling with confidence in no time.
If you’d like to learn whether your gummy smile can be resolved with our innovative crown-lengthening treatment, please contact our office in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to schedule a consultation today.