Gummy Smile: Causes, Solutions, Can Braces Fix It?

Everyone wants to look good when they smile. But, what if someone has a gummy smile?

Normally, when you have a gummy smile, you will want to fix it to look beautiful. While a gummy smile may seem like a minor cosmetic issue, it can actually be a sign of other severe dental problems.

In this blog post, we will explore the causes and solutions of gummy smiles and you’ll also know whether braces can fix gummy smiles.

What is a gummy smile?

A gummy smile is an excessive display of gum tissue when smiling. It can make your teeth appear too small and your smile weak.

It can be caused by a number of things, including the way your teeth are shaped, excess gum tissue, how your jawbone is aligned, or how your muscles function. Gummy smiles can also be caused by certain medical conditions, such as cleft palate or Down syndrome.

If you have a gummy smile, it may not bother you. But if you’re self-conscious about it, there are treatments that can help. These include braces, jaw surgery, and Botox injections. With treatment, you can learn to smile in a way that shows less gum and makes you feel more confident.

Why do you have a gummy smile?

Let’s take a look at the possible causes of a gummy smile:

1. Excess gum tissue

Orthodontic Braces care - Welcome
Orthodontic Braces care - Welcome

The main cause of a gummy smile is too much gum tissue. Some people have extra gum tissue for their teeth, which can cause a gummy smile. This can be due to genetics or it could be the result of certain medical conditions or a side effect of certain medications.

2. Gum disease

Gum disease or gum inflammation is a condition of the gums that can cause them to swell and bleed. It can also make your gums recede, making your teeth look longer than they actually are.

Gingivitis or gum disease is a common cause of a gummy smile. This is because inflamed and swollen gums appear larger over time.

3. Genetics

If you have family members with a gummy smile, you may be more likely to have one as well. This is because the condition can be passed down from generation to generation.

Some people have more gum tissue than others, which can make the gums appear to be smiling.

4. Gingival hypertrophy or overgrowth

Gingival hypertrophy is a condition where the gums become enlarged. This can be due to certain medications. It can also be a side effect of surgery or an infection.

5. Short teeth

Another common cause of a gummy smile is short teeth as the gums can cover up a large part of the tooth, making it appear smaller. This can be due to genetics or it can be the result of wear and tear.

6. Short upper lip

A short upper lip can also cause a gummy smile. This is because the upper lip doesn’t cover as much of the teeth when you smile.

7. Poor oral hygiene

If you don’t brush and floss properly, it can accumulate plaque and tartar on your teeth, resulting in gum inflammation. Eventually, it’ll make your gums appear more swollen and cause a gummy smile.

If you wear braces, improper dental hygiene can lead to a gummy smile more than usual.

8. Certain medications

Certain medications can cause your gums to swell and appear larger. These include steroids, certain antibiotics, phenytoin, heart disease medications, and chemotherapy drugs.

9. Anatomical anomalies

There are some people who have anatomical anomalies that can cause a gummy smile. These anomalies can include a cleft palate, a high-arched palate, or a submucous cleft.

A cleft lip or palate is a birth defect that can cause the lips and mouth to be deformed. This can lead to a gummy smile.

10. Certain medical conditions

There are certain medical conditions that can cause a gummy smile. These include Down syndrome and cystic fibrosis.

Down syndrome is a condition that affects the way the body develops. People with Down syndrome often have a small upper jaw and teeth that look longer than they are.

11. A hyperactive upper lip

The muscles that control the upper lip can also be a cause of a gummy smile. If these muscles are overactive, they can cause the lip to lift too high, exposing too much gum tissue.

12. Abnormal Tooth Eruption

Another potential cause of a gummy smile is altered tooth eruption. This happens when the teeth don’t come in correctly or they come in at an unusual angle. This can cause the gum tissue to appear larger than it actually is.

Moreover, the tooth might be covered partially with gum due to this abnormal tooth eruption and give you a gummy smile.

13. Oversized labial frenum

This is the small strip of tissue that connects your upper lip to your gums. If it’s too large, it can pull your upper lip up too high, making your gums appear more prominent.

14. Lip incompetence

This means that the lips are unable to close properly, resulting in gummy smiles. It can be due to a birth defect or an injury.

15. Retruding front teeth

A gummy smile can also be caused by teeth that are too far forward (retruding front teeth) or by a class 2Div 2 malocclusion.

This is a dental condition where the upper teeth bite behind the lower teeth. It can cause the gums to appear too large when you smile.

16. Resorption of the teeth

Resorption is a process where the body reabsorbs the minerals in the teeth. As a result, the teeth may appear smaller and the smile may appear gummy.

17. Protruding teeth

When the upper teeth protrude too far out, it can give the appearance of a gummy smile. This can be due to genetics, having a larger jawbone, or could be the result of an injury that caused the teeth to become misaligned.

18. Traumatic injury to the lips or jaws

An injury to the lips or jaws can cause the muscles that control the movement of the lips to become damaged. This can lead to a condition called paralysis of the lips, which can cause a gummy smile.

19. Smile enhancement treatments

Some treatments that are meant to enhance the smile, such as teeth whitening or bonding, can actually end up making the gums look more prominent.

This is because the treatment can make the teeth look larger than they actually are, which in turn makes the gums look smaller.

20. Jawbone problem

Your jawbone could be the cause of your gummy smile if it’s not aligned correctly. This can happen if your upper and lower jaws don’t meet in the right way. It can also happen if your upper jaw is too small or your lower jaw is too big.

What to do if you have a gummy smile.

If you’re unhappy with your gummy smile, there are a few things you can do to improve it. You should start by practicing good oral hygiene and visiting your dentist regularly. If you have any gum disease, your dentist will be able to treat it and help improve the appearance of your smile.

You can also try at-home treatments like using a toothbrush designed to reduce gingival overgrowth.

If the problem isn’t solved, you can talk to your dentist about getting your gums trimmed or your teeth bonded.

You may also want to consider cosmetic treatments such as dental veneers, or gum contouring. These procedures can help to make your smile look more uniform and attractive. Talk to your dentist about which option is right for you.

Finally, you can try using braces, a retainer, clear aligners, or other dental appliances to help position your teeth and gums correctly. Talk to your dentist to see what option is best for you.

How to fix a gummy smile?

If you’re not happy with your gummy smile, a dentist or orthodontist can fix it by following methods.

1. Treating gum diseases

If your gums are inflamed, they can be treated with medications, professional dental cleaning or surgery. This treatment can help reduce the inflammation and decrease the amount of gum tissue that shows when you smile.

2. Scaling and root planning

This procedure is done to remove tartar (hardened plaque) from your teeth and gums. It can help reduce gum inflammation. So, it’s the main treatment option if you have a gummy smile due to gum disease such as gingivitis.

3. Crown lengthening

This procedure involves removing some of the gum tissue and bone around your teeth. It can make your teeth look longer and your smile less gummy.

4. Laser gum contouring

This is a cosmetic procedure that can help enhance the appearance of your smile by reshaping the gum line.

Laser gum contouring is usually done along with other procedures, such as crown lengthening or scaling and root planing.

The procedure is done using a laser to remove extra gum tissue. It can be done in one or more sessions, depending on the extent of the work that needs to be done.

5. Braces or orthodontics

Orthodontic treatment can move your teeth into the right position and improve the appearance of your smile. If it’s because of misaligned, protruded, or retruded teeth, you’ll need braces, clear aligners such as Invisalign, or other orthodontic treatment for that.

6. Orthognathic surgery, or jaw surgery

If your gummy smile is due to large size jaws or severely protruded jawbone, you may need orthognathic surgery. This type of surgery is done to improve the alignment of your jaws and teeth. So, your gummy smile will also be corrected after the surgery.

7. Gingivectomy

If you have mild gingival overgrowth, your dentist may simply trim the excess gum tissue to even out your gum line. This procedure is called gingivectomy or gum reshaping surgery. This can be done with a laser or scalpel, and the results can be permanent.

8. Lip repositioning

This is a procedure that can be done by a dentist or an orthodontist. It involves making small cuts in the gums and lips and then stitching them into a new position. This can make your gums look less puffy and improve the appearance of your smile.

9. Treating certain medical conditions

If your gummy smile is due to a medical condition, your doctor may be able to prescribe medication to help. In some cases, you might need surgery.

10. Dental veneers

Dental veneers are thin, custom-made shells that are bonded to the front of your teeth. They can improve the appearance of your smile by making your teeth look straighter, whiter, and less gummy.

11. Botox

This is a cosmetic treatment that can be done by a dentist or plastic surgeon. Botox injections can help reduce the appearance of a gummy smile by relaxing the muscles around your mouth.

Can braces fix a gummy smile?

If your gummy smile is due to crooked, protruded or retruded teeth, braces may be able to help. By aligning your teeth, braces can improve the appearance of your smile and make your gums less visible. However, if the cause of your gummy smile is gum disease or excess gum tissue, you’ll need other treatment options.

If you have gum disease, braces may also be able to help by reducing the inflammation and decreasing the amount of gum tissue that shows when you smile.

In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove excess gum tissue.

Talk to your dentist or doctor to learn more about your options and find the best solution for you.

How do braces fix a gummy smile?

Braces can fix a gummy smile by moving the teeth into their proper positions and aligning the jaw. This will give the appearance of less gum tissue being shown when you smile. In some cases, braces may also be used to help correct an overbite or underbite, which can also cause a gummy smile.

If you are considering braces to fix your gummy smile, be sure to consult with an orthodontist to see if this is the best treatment option for you.

Should you treat gummy smiles?

If you’re not sure whether you want to have treatment for your gummy smile, talk to your dentist or orthodontist about it. They can help you to figure out if treatment is right for you.

Gummy smiles are a common orthodontic concern. Though they don’t necessarily indicate any underlying dental problems, many people feel self-conscious about their appearance. However, if you develop a gummy smile suddenly and have gum swollen or bleeding, you need to find out the causes and treat it.

If you’re not sure whether you want to have treatment for your gummy smile, talk to your dentist or orthodontist about it. They can help you to figure out if treatment is right for you.

Can braces cause a gummy smile?

Braces can cause a gummy smile if oral hygiene is poor with braces. This is because the braces can trap food and bacteria around the gum line which can lead to inflammation and gingivitis. Poor oral hygiene with braces can also cause decalcification or white spots on the teeth. Therefore, it is important to brush and floss regularly with braces to avoid a gummy smile.

What to do if you have a gummy smile with braces?

If you find that braces are causing your gums to swell and appear larger than normal, first of all, you will need to consult with your orthodontist. They will be able to advise you on the best course of treatment.

In some cases, they may recommend that you switch to a different type of braces. If your gums are only mildly swollen, they may suggest that you try using a dental mouthwash or toothpaste that is designed to reduce inflammation.

If the gummy smile is due to other causes, such as tooth decay or gum disease, your orthodontist will likely recommend a different course of treatment.

In the meantime, there are a few things you can do.

Make sure to brush and floss regularly to avoid trapping food and bacteria around the gum line.

If your gums are inflamed, your dentist may recommend a mouthwash or gum treatment to help reduce the inflammation.

How do you stop a gummy smile with braces?

Here are some tips to prevent a gummy smile from braces:

1. You should brush your teeth more carefully and floss more regularly. This will help to keep your gum line clean and free of plaque.

2. Avoid hard and chewy foods that can damage your braces and also make it hard to maintain oral hygiene.

3. You can use an electric toothbrush to brush your teeth properly and thoroughly with braces on your teeth.

4. You can also use a water flosser to help remove plaque and debris from your teeth and gums. If you have white spots on your teeth, your dentist can help to treat them.

5. Be sure to see your orthodontist for regular checkups and cleanings. This will help to make sure that your braces are in good condition and that your gums are healthy.

6. Try to avoid habits that can damage your braces, such as chewing on hard objects or using your teeth as tools.

7. Finally, you can talk to your orthodontist about getting your braces adjusted so that your gum line is not as visible.

Conclusion

A gummy smile can be frustrating and make you feel self-conscious. There are many reasons why someone might have a gummy smile. Some people are born with it, while others develop it over time due to certain medical conditions or as a side effect of certain medications. In some cases, it may simply be due to poor dental hygiene.

However, no matter the cause of your gummy smile, there are treatment options available to help improve it. Braces can help you to fix gummy smiles in many cases. But, some cases might need other treatment options.

Talk to your dentist or doctor to learn more about your options and find the best solution for you.