How to Correct a Gummy Smile: Effective Treatment Options

Everyone deserves a radiant smile. It’s the first thing people notice about you. But, for some patients, having excess gum tissue can make them self-conscious about sharing their smile with the world. Luckily, a gummy smile is treatable. At MR Dental Aesthetics, we have helped countless patients who weren’t sure how to get rid of gummy smile insecurities achieve a grin they love. 

What is a Gummy Smile?

A gummy smile (medically known as excessive gingival display) refers to a condition in which there is too much visible gum tissue above the top teeth. Most people feel that less than two millimeters of exposed gum tissue is ideal. However, when excess gum tissue is present, it can make your teeth appear small, throwing off the balance of your smile. 

What Causes a Gummy Smile?

A multitude of issues can cause a gummy smile. Dr. Rashti will assess your overall periodontal health, as well as the structure of your teeth, gums, and jaw. From there, she can determine the underlying root of your excess gum tissue and identify the best approach for how to fix gummy smile problems in your specific case. Below are some of the most common causes of excessive gingival display.

  • Abnormal tooth eruption. When your teeth don’t develop on a normal schedule, they could fail to settle in the proper position. This can cause the gums to be too prominent.
  • Hyperactive upper lip. If the upper lip raises too high when you smile, it exposes too much gum tissue, leading to a gummy smile.
  • Improper jaw development. When the upper jaw overdevelops, it might not leave enough room for the teeth to emerge fully, resulting in a disproportionate amount of visible gum tissue.
  • Short upper lip. An underdeveloped upper lip can fail to sufficiently cover the gum line when you smile.
  • Genetics. Nearly half of patients with a gummy smile inherit the condition. 
  • Wear and tear. Over time, tooth enamel can wear down, causing the teeth to appear smaller and the gumline to be more prominent.
  • Gum disease. In some cases, inflammation brought on by infection could be causing the gums to enlarge. Because gummy smiles can correspond to oral health issues, Dr. Rashti will always perform an oral health examination before moving forward with cosmetic treatment. 

Dr. Rashti prioritizes a holistic approach to every patient’s care. Before moving forward with fixing a gummy smile, she will make sure you fully understand the source of your issue, empowering you to make an informed decision about treatment. 

How to Get Rid of a Gummy Smile

At MR Dental Aesthetics, we offer patients surgical and non-surgical options to help them achieve the captivating smile they’ve always wanted. A beautiful smile is a healthy smile, which is why Dr. Rashti will ensure your gummy smile treatment plan improves both function and aesthetics. 

Recognizing some patients’ apprehension about dental procedures, Dr. Rashti takes a compassionate approach to every consultation and treatment plan. Before moving forward with any of the procedures listed below, she will discuss your options for pain reduction, including local and general anesthesia. At MR Dental Aesthetics, it’s vital that you feel confident that you will have a comfortable experience. 

Laser Gum Reshaping

One of the least invasive and quickest forms of treatment is laser gum reshaping, also known as a laser gingivectomy. When it comes to how to fix a gummy smile without surgery, this is one of our more popular options. During this procedure, the doctor uses a special pen to define the desired new gumline. Then, she uses a laser to remove excess gum tissue. 

This procedure takes no longer than a few hours, and patients can usually return to their normal activities on the same day as treatment. The results of laser gum reshaping are permanent, so there is no need for repeat treatment.

Surgical Gum Reshaping

Patients with larger areas of unwanted gum tissue are often good candidates for gummy smile surgery. For this procedure, like with the laser option, your doctor will define the desired gum line. Then, she will use a scalpel to remove unwanted gum tissue. 

This option typically takes less than three hours but will vary depending on your unique tooth and gum anatomy. You might experience soreness for one to two weeks following surgery, which you can take over-the-counter pain medications to reduce.   


Sometimes, teeth that are too short cause a gummy smile. If that is the case, veneers can be the best path to a toothier grin. A veneer is simply a layer of composite or porcelain material attached directly to the top of your existing teeth. It can make the teeth appear longer, improving the proportions of your smile. Dr. Rashti uses porcelain veneers, guaranteeing you a beautiful and natural-looking result. 

Receiving veneers will take two visits with us. During the first visit, we’ll remove a small layer of enamel from your teeth — this helps maintain the proper tooth thickness and creates an abrasive surface for the veneer to bond to. During that same visit, our team will take an impression of your teeth, which we’ll then send to a lab that creates the veneers. At your second visit, we’ll attach your veneers and inform you on how to maintain them.

Scaling and Root Planing

Patients regularly visit us and ask how to get rid of a gummy smile naturally. Dr. Rashti closely evaluates how to get rid of gummy smile imperfections in each individual patient, addressing any preexisting oral health issues first and foremost. If infection or inflammation is the root issue, cosmetic procedures might not be necessary. Should Dr. Rashti find that this is the cause of your overexposed gum tissue, she will likely recommend scaling and root planing. This involves the removal of stubborn plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth, as well as deep cleaning of the root surfaces to which bacteria can attach.

In some cases, this intensive cleaning procedure is enough to make the gum line recede and restore your smile to desirable proportions. However, it might simply be the prerequisite to one of the above-listed cosmetic procedures. 

Which Gummy Smile Treatment is Right for You?

Dr. Rashti will help you determine the ideal treatment for your aesthetic goals and comfort level. You can prepare for your initial consultation by considering the following factors:

  • How severe is your gummy smile? If you are looking to remove several millimeters of gum tissue, surgery could be your best option. However, if your gummy smile is mild, laser reshaping could get you the results you desire.
  • What is the cause of your gummy smile? When small teeth are the cause, veneers are often the solution. However, if excess gum tissue is the cause, a tissue removal procedure like laser or scalpel surgery is usually the most effective treatment.
  • How is your overall oral health? If you have struggled to maintain regular oral hygiene appointments or know you suffer from gingivitis, a deep cleaning might be your first step to a less gummy smile.

Cosmetic Dental Solutions from MR Dental Aesthetics

Are you ready to transform your smile into one you love to show off? Dr. Rashti has decades of experience fixing gummy smile conditions. She will provide attentive care and sculpt a tailored treatment plan for your cosmetic goals. Dr. Rashti treats every patient with the utmost discretion because she understands that your dental journey is personal.

At MR Dental Aesthetics, we emphasize the close connection between oral and overall health. With most major health issues being linked to periodontal ones, Dr. Rashti educates each patient on the importance of dental hygiene and designs a treatment plan for you that is aligned with your overall dental well-being. To ensure a cohesive and seamless experience, Dr. Rashti will be the only dentist you work with from start to finish. 

If you’ve felt lost on how to get rid of gummy smile self-consciousness, your brilliant smile is within reach at MR Dental Aesthetics. Book your consultation today.

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