A beautiful smile is easy to imagine. We see them in celebrity magazines, in movies, and on television practically every day.
You’ve seen countless actors on the red carpet flashing their bright white, perfectly straight teeth for the cameras.
What’s missing from this description? Gums.
You may know someone who has a “gummy smile.” You may even be that person. Through no fault of your own, you may reveal more gum than you would like — and maybe more gum than teeth — when you share your smile.
If live in or near Phoenix, then you can change your smile by visiting with our dentist at Dental Implants and Periodontology of Arizona.
In additional to providing dental implants and periodontal treatment, we can change the appearance of your gums to improve the appearance of your smile.
Gums Can Change Your Smile
When you think of a “Hollywood smile,” you probably imagine someone like Julia Roberts.
If you look at pictures of her, you’ll see a lot of teeth. Her gums are there, but they don’t distract from the overall appearance of her smile.
If your tooth-to-gum ratio was tilted more in favor of your gums, then you know that your don’t have this “perfect” smile.
You might have been dealt with some teasing as you were growing up because of this. The things that happen in our childhood often affect us much later in life. That teasing may have affected your self-confidence, or it may have made you self-conscious about your smile.
Because of that, you may avoid smiling in public and in photos. Since we now live in an age of Facebook, Instagram, and who knows what other social media will come next, our pictures are online, whether we like it or not.
If you are sensitive about your smile, you may be hesitant to go out in public or to meet new people out of fear that they will judge you for your smile.
We want to help change that for you, just as we have done for our patients for more than 30 years.
Moving The Frame
When you smile, your lips have a natural resting place. This opening serves as a natural frame for your smile.
Where your lips rest is determined, in part, by the shape of your gums. If you have a large amount of gum tissue, then it can cause your upper lip to rest higher than you would like.
This may mean your “frame” exposes as much gum as teeth. It’s also possible that you reveal more gum tissue than teeth.
To fix this issue, we need to change where your lips rest. We do this with a process call gum contouring.
We begin by numbing your gums so you will not feel anything during your treatment. (If you are concerned about this, we also offer dental sedation, which has both anesthetic and amnesiac benefits. You won’t feel anything, and you may not remember anything about the procedure.)
Once you are numb, sedated, or both, Dr. Komarnyckyj will remove the excess gum tissue.
When you are finished, your upper lip will rest closer to the top of your teeth. This will create a higher tooth-to-gum ratio, so your smile will be more “toothy” instead.
Changing The Picture
Sometimes the reason you have a gummy smile isn’t your gums. Sometimes it’s your teeth.
If your teeth did not erupt particularly far from your gumline as other people, then you will appear to have “short teeth.” This, too, can affect the teeth-to-gum ratio inside your lips when you smile.
The procedure to correct this issue is known as crown lengthening, and in many respects, it is similar to gum contouring.
With crown lengthening, we will numb your gums. Then we will remove gum tissue to expose more of your crown.
When we finish, your lips will still rest in the same place, but more tooth will be exposed than before.
The difference is that gum contouring would be more like moving the frame to reveal a different area of a picture, while crown lengthening is more like changing the picture itself.
Take Pride In Your Smile
If you have been hiding your “gummy” smile for years or decades, then we want to help you change that. You just need to schedule a visit to our Phoenix dentist office.
Gum contouring or crown lengthening could help you feel more comfortable with your smile. And it may improve your self-confidence as well.
Call Dental Implants and Periodontology of Arizona at 602-842-6841 or fill out our online form to make an appointment.
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