When you smile, does it seem like more of your gums are showing than your teeth? If so, you have what is referred to as a “gummy smile,” a condition which can be corrected by gum recontouring. Unlike in the past, modern gum recontouring is a quick and nearly painless process thanks to the use of a soft tissue laser instead of a scalpel.

If you are unhappy with your gummy smile, please call (281) 367-5559 today for an appointment with Woodlands cosmetic dentist Dr. Scott Young at Woodlands Premier Dentistry.

Causes of Gummy Smiles

Gummy smiles can be caused by:

  • Too-small teeth
  • Too-long gums
  • Swollen gums
  • Uneven gum line

If your teeth are simply too small for your smile, a condition often earmarked by large gaps between underdeveloped teeth, you should visit our page on porcelain veneers. Swollen gums are often a sign of gum disease, which should be treated. Gum disease can also cause recession around some teeth, which creates an uneven gum line. If you have gum disease, we may recommend treatment before recontouring. Sometimes, an uneven gum line can also be caused by irregular development of the gums.

What Gum Recontouring Can Correct

If your gums are simply too long and cover too much of your tooth surface, your smile can be brought to life with gum recontouring. Gum recontouring is simply the process of reshaping your gum line by removing the excess tissue from covering the front surface of your teeth.

Your gum line is as important to the appearance of your smile as the actual teeth. An uneven gum line can make your teeth look crooked, even if they’re straight. The process of gum recontouring, also called gum shaping or gum reshaping, can correct an uneven gum line to help your smile look straight.

Gum recontouring does not change the shape of your teeth. If you are unhappy with the shape of your teeth, have large gaps between your teeth, have chipped teeth, or if your teeth are discolored, you may want to pair gum recontouring with dental bonding or tooth whitening.

Gum Recontouring Process

The process of gum recontouring is a simple and relatively short procedure. Gum recontouring often requires only one office visit. Some dental offices use the traditional incision technique to reshape gum lines, but at Woodlands Premier Dentistry, Houston cosmetic dentist Dr. Scott Young uses a soft tissue laser, which allows greater precision and symmetry in gum reshaping.

First, Dr. Young will discuss your aesthetic goals with you to ensure that gum recontouring will achieve what you desire and that your expectations are realistic. Then, using a soft-tissue laser, Dr. Young will remove the excess gum tissue, creating a more uniform or shorter gum line.

The benefits of a soft tissue laser include:

  • Comfort: Soft tissue lasers are very gentle on the gums so there’s little discomfort.
  • Faster recovery: Soft tissue lasers cause less trauma and help seal the wound, so there’s less swelling and the healing progresses more quickly. There’s also less risk of infection.
  • Less bleeding: Because the laser seals as it goes, there will be less bleeding during your process.
  • Greater precision: Less bleeding means that Dr. Young will have a more clear view of the treatment area. And because the laser is light, tightly focused, and unaffected by friction, he can aim it exactly where it needs to be.

If you are uncertain whether gum recontouring can improve your smile, you should consider visiting our office for a comprehensive consultation, during which you can discuss your goals with Dr. Young, ask your questions, and express your concerns.

To learn more about gum recontouring, please contact our Houston cosmetic dentistry office today to schedule your initial consultation at Woodlands Premier Dentistry, serving The Woodlands, Houston, Spring, and the surrounding areas of Texas.