Excessive gingival display, also known as having a gummy smile, is where the gum tissue above your top teeth shows more than you would prefer. If you have a gummy smile, fixing it probably crossed your mind a time or two, but you may not be sure about your options.
At Colair Beauty Lounge, we see many patients who want to know how to get rid of their gummy smile. We’re always happy to help and have registered nurses available to do just that using Botox injections. It’s safe and quick, with nearly immediate results.
So, how does someone end up with a gummy smile, and how can Botox help? We’ll answer both of those questions in this article.
What Causes a Gummy Smile?
Generally, a gummy smile is more of a cosmetic issue than a medical issue. It can be a result of genetics, medication, or even poor dental hygiene.
Much of the way we look is determined by our genes. For example, how big our lips and gums are and how our teeth grow are all decided by genetics without our explicit input. We might have mom and dad to thank for our smiles, or perhaps even people who are a generation or two further back!
Having a thin upper lip and/or big gums will likely cause your gum line to present more when you smile than is typical. When it comes to your adult teeth growing in, your gums may:
- Grow over the tooth more than expected
- Compensate for teeth erupting too far and growing excessively
- Develop to be largely due to a long upper jaw bone
Though genes play a big role in your smile, they aren’t the only factor. You may want to check the potential side effects of the medications you’re taking (if any). Enlarged gums can result from taking some immunosuppressants, heart disease medications, and some other prescription medications. Another factor may be poor oral hygiene, which will exacerbate the gummy smile appearance due to inflammation from plaque and bacteria.
There are many potential explanations behind a gummy smile but the answer is usually that you were simply born that way! About 10% of adults between the ages of 20 and 30 have an excessive gingival display. The appearance tends to improve with age because the upper lip begins to drop, but if you’re not seeing a change or just don’t want to wait that long, there are ways to change the appearance of your smile!
One popular way Colair can help reduce the appearance of a gummy smile is using Botox.
How Does Botox Help Treat Gummy Smiles?
Many of our clients want to know how to get rid of gummy smiles. No, there aren’t any home remedies, but thankfully there are many gummy smile fixes that professionals provide for you to choose from. Veneers, braces, and gum contouring are a few routes you can take, though they are often time-consuming. Botox, however, is a quick, noninvasive procedure that we provide in our office!
After booking your Botox appointment, you’ll spend about 15 minutes in our chair for the treatment. One of our registered nurses will inject Botox between your nose and upper lip. The Botox freezes the orbicularis oris muscle, allowing less of your gumline to show when you smile. Of course, each patient’s experience varies, but you can expect the effects to last about 3 months. If you want to avoid the Botox fully wearing off, you can always schedule another appointment for about 3 months after your initial treatment to ensure that there isn’t a gap between when your first treatment wears off and your next treatment happens.
How Many Units of Botox Are Needed for a Gummy Smile?
We have about 40 different muscles in our face and use 10 of them in our smile, specifically mouth formation. Each muscle, depending on size and level of activity, requires a different amount of Botox. Only two to four units are typically necessary to fix most gummy smiles, but scheduling a consultation with a Colair registered nurse will help you understand exactly how much you need prior to your treatment.
Benefits of Using Botox
Botox has many benefits that make it stand out from other treatments for a gummy smile, such as:
- It is a non-invasive and quick procedure.
- It is relatively inexpensive compared to more invasive procedures, such as surgery.
- It can be a temporary solution for those not wanting to commit to permanent results or just wanting to try out a new look.
- It can easily be completed during a lunch break.
- There are near immediate, visible results.
Perhaps the most important benefit is the confidence boost our clients receive after undergoing this procedure. If you find yourself overthinking how you smile, even in your happiest moments, because you’re worried that it will seem gummy, these treatments could be really helpful for you!
Aside from improving the appearance of a gummy smile, it’s been shown that Botox may reduce the presence of anxiety and depression in some patients. It’s not a guarantee for all patients, but it is some exciting research!
Now, let’s go over some FAQs about this treatment process.
1. Is Botox for gummy smiles safe?
Absolutely! Always check with your primary care doctor before having any procedure performed on your body. Generally speaking, though, Botox is a safe, quick, and effective procedure for a gummy smile.
2. How long will the effects last?
Most patients maintain results for about 3 months. However, every patient experience is different, so check in with our helpful staff if you have any questions or suspect that your results are wearing off at a different time!
3. How many units of Botox are needed to fix a gummy smile?
Only two to four units are typically necessary to fix most gummy smiles, but scheduling a consultation with a Colair registered nurse will help you understand exactly how much you need prior to your treatment.
4. What happens during this procedure?
Botox is injected from a tiny needle into the muscles between your nose and upper lip. This freezes the muscles in a way that prevents the gum line from showing too much when you smile.
5. How long before I see results?
Botox for gummy smiles has a near-immediate effect.
6. How soon can I book an appointment?
We’d love to get you on the calendar! Visit Colair Beauty Lounge and Med Spa in Gilbert or call to schedule an appointment. We’re happy to answer any other questions you may have.