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Gum Contouring to Reshape Your Smile

Start the new year off right by choosing to improve the look and feel of your smile. One way to do that is to ask your dentist about gum contouring. If you have a “gummy smile” or receding gums, it can impact the quality of your smile and your oral health. 

close up image of woman smiling with a dental mirror near her mouth gum contouring cosmetic dentistry dentist in Roslyn Heights New York

A gummy smile occurs when the ratio of your teeth to your gums is out of proportion. Typically, you will have more gum tissue than exposed teeth. This can give your smile an uneven appearance. While a gummy smile can influence your smile aesthetically, it won’t necessarily affect your oral health. However, receding gums can impact your oral health. 

As your gums recede, there are more of your teeth that become exposed. It is possible that your gums can recede all the way to the tooth’s root. This can increase your chances of developing tooth decay. Additionally, your gums help stabilize your teeth. When your gums recede, there is not enough gum tissue to keep your teeth steady, leading to loose or missing teeth. 

Whether you have too much gum tissue or not enough, your dentist can provide you with a solution through gum contouring or reshaping. 

What Happens During the Procedure?

To begin, you will have a consultation with your dentist. This will allow them to see what process will be the most effective for your gums. Additionally, they can make a plan using computerized smile analysis. You will be able to see what your gums will look like before the procedure even begins. 

To make you as comfortable as possible, your dentist can offer several sedation options—either oral conscious sedation or nitrous oxide. This will minimize any pain or discomfort during the procedure. Also, sedation will ensure that you are relaxed and anxiety-free. 

If you have a “gummy” smile, your dentist can perform a gum lift, which is just reshaping the gum tissue. They will lift the gum line to expose more of the surface of your teeth. Other methods include the use of dental crowns or veneers. 

With receding gums, your dentist can perform a variety of treatment options, including a pinhole gum lift. This involves creating small holes in the gums to pull the gum tissue down farther on your teeth. 

What is the Recovery Like?

Gum contouring is a relatively non-invasive procedure. This means that you are less likely to have any major complications or issues. As a result, you will probably have an easy recovery. 

Following your procedure, you may have some swelling or inflammation. Additionally, you may experience some mild pain or discomfort. One way to minimize some of these side effects is to take over-the-counter pain medication. This can also reduce swelling too. 

In addition, you may find that using ice can help with pain relief and swelling. Icing your face can minimize swelling and help reduce pain.