How Gums Impact Your Smile

The appearance of your gums can dramatically impact your smile. If your gums are large or overgrown, your teeth may look too small. Some people might think your teeth are worn down when in reality they are actually just covered by your gums. Overgrown gums can make patients look older than they actually are. To treat overgrown gums, the procedure is known as a gingivectomy. In the event that your teeth are actually too short, we can use dental crowns or porcelain veneers to lengthen your teeth.

Another way gums can impact your smile is when they are unhealthy. Unhealthy gums are red or inflamed and usually infected. When gums are unhealthy, they can contribute to tooth mobility and result in crooked or gaped teeth. Without gum treatment, unhealthy gums can result in tooth loss and receding gums. When gums are unhealthy, your smile will look less attractive. If you notice any symptoms of gum disease, make sure to tell your dentist for treatment.

Other patients may experience gums that are uneven. Uneven gums can occur when a patient has overgrown gums in some areas and receding gums in other areas. To treat this problem, Dr. Chris Hill will recommend either a gum graft or a gingivectomy.


Patients who have overgrown gums that result in stubby, short teeth, can benefit from a gingivectomy treatment. Underneath the overgrown gums are beautiful teeth waiting to be revealed. This problem is often known as having a gummy smile. If you have this problem, Dr. Chris Hill may recommend gum contouring, also known as a gingivectomy.

Gum contouring is a cosmetic dentistry procedure performed using a soft tissue laser. You will need to have a consultation with Dr. Hill where he examines your teeth to determine if gum contouring is right for you. If he agrees, he will schedule your procedure for a later date. On the day of your procedure, we will provide you with sedation dentistry to help you feel comfortable. Using the laser, Dr. Chris Hill will sculpt away the excess gum tissue to reveal your longer teeth. After a brief recovery, you will experience a brand new smile!

Gum Contouring for a Gummy Smile

Woman after gum contouring

Even if your teeth are long, when they are covered up by gums, they might appear to be short. Excess gum tissue can cause teeth to appear short because of an abnormal eruption of teeth. If the muscle that controls your upper lip becomes hyperactive, it causes the lip to rise higher than normal. When this occurs, your gums are more prevalent when you smile. Gummy smiles can also occur with abnormal upper jaw bone development.

Most cosmetic dentists will agree that the perfect smile only reveals a small portion of gum tissue. The gum tissue that is visible should be balanced with your upper lip. Many patients choose to get a gingivectomy treatment to perfect their smile. With a better smile, patients tend to show more confidence when they smile and eat. In addition, they also tend to improve their periodontal health as a whole.

If you have a gummy smile or feel you could benefit from gum contouring give us a call at (314) 678-7876 for an appointment at our office.

Say goodbye to your gummy smile and hello to a beautiful smile. Gum contouring is the cosmetic dentistry option you’ve been searching for in St. Louis at Smile On Dental Studio in Richmond Heights, MO. See the possibilities of gum contouring for yourself.