Veneers To Fix a Gummy Smile

Dental Veneers And Dental Laminates McLean, VA

Using dental veneers to fix a gummy smile may not be an option that most people have considered, but this procedure can be a successful solution when performed by a qualified dental professional. Well-placed veneers can be used to create the impression of longer teeth and shorter gum tissue.

What causes a gummy smile?

A “gummy” smile simply refers to a large amount of a patient’s gum tissue that is visible when the patient smiles. Though gummy smiles can be fixed with dental procedures, the gingival display, or “gumminess,” itself is not normally a medical problem. Whether a patient is bothered by how much gum tissue is displayed is largely a matter of personal perception. Usually, a smile appears gummy because the patient’s teeth are shorter than normal. This could be due to several reasons, but most are not harmful and there is often nothing the patient could have done differently to prevent these scenarios from happening.

The patient’s teeth are shorter than normal

Having short teeth can be caused by genetics, or this condition can begin when the teeth erupt from the gumline. Teeth that did not erupt completely can still be covered by some gum tissue, which creates the extra gumminess in the patient’s smile. Short teeth can also be caused by excessive teeth grinding.

The patient’s upper lip draws back too far when smiling

Sometimes, the patient’s upper lip is at fault for the gummy smile. If the patient’s upper lip rises too far when the patient smiles, this could cause an appearance of gumminess. Similarly, this patient’s upper lip could simply be too short to cover what is considered to be a normal amount of gum tissue when smiling.

The patient’s gums are longer than normal

The gums may be longer than average. This condition is called gum hypertrophy, and it can be caused by dental problems like gingivitis, the buildup of plaque, or infection. If a patient suspects gum enlargement due to these reasons, it is a good idea to visit a dentist for a checkup before considering cosmetic alterations to the smile.

How can veneers fix a gummy smile?

Veneers are used to fix cosmetic imperfections in a patient’s smile and can be implemented as a quick fix to cover stained teeth. These appliances are also used to correct the appearance of having too much gum tissue. Veneers are composed of a thin, porcelain shell that is placed over a row of teeth — usually the top ones — and can be used to make teeth look longer. They are an attractive option for patients who grind their teeth, who have genetically short teeth, or who have teeth that are otherwise damaged or stained in addition to having a gummy smile.


Veneers can be successfully implemented for patients who would like to change the appearance of a gummy smile. Every patient’s case is unique, so it is important to speak with a dentist to see if this treatment would be a good option for you.

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