Correction of Gummy Smile
Gummy smile is a very unaesthetic and common condition defined as the exposure, while an individual is smiling, of more than 3mm of gingival tissue.
There are a number of surgical procedures that can correct the “gum show” when you smile. The choice of the surgical procedure depends on the cause of the gummy smile. The condition can be due to soft tissue or bone-teeth malposition.
A simple approach that I use is to transect the depressor septi nasi muscle, at the junction of the nose and upper lip. This will produce slight ptosis of the upper lip, lengthen the distance between subnasale and the vermillion border. I routinely combine this procedure with lip filler to increase the vertical height of the wet surface of the lip.
The procedure is often performed in the office under local anaesthesia as an out-patient visit. There is no visible scaring as it is performed through internal nasal approach. Following the minor procedure, the patient will immediately notice the difference and a new smile is ready to be enjoyed. Patients with more complicated cases or who desire to have additional cosmetic dental work require different techniques such as excess gum tissue trimming, gum lift, and/or reshaping of the underlying bone and teeth. These surgeries are often performed by prosthodontists and specialist dentists.