Excessive gingival display 一 more often referred to as a gummy smile 一 happens when too much gum tissue is visible when you smile. Overpronounced gums can make your teeth seem shorter than they are, leaving you unsatisfied with or even self-conscious about your smile.
Genetic factors such as having naturally small teeth can make your gums appear more prominent, but that’s not the only cause of a gummy smile. If the muscles in your upper lip are hyperactive, it can make your lip lift higher, revealing more gum tissue.
Our expert providers at Serendipity Med Spa in Southlake, Texas, use Botox® injections to reduce the appearance of a gummy smile and relax those hyperactive muscles. Here’s how it works.
Botox injections, made from a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, can target specific nerves and muscles safely and effectively. The compounds in Botox work by relaxing certain nerves. This is why Botox is so effective as a defense against dynamic wrinkles: It stops the muscle contractions that make wrinkles form.
In the case of a gummy smile, the same principle applies. Your aesthetic injector administers the Botox into the muscles that control your upper lip. This temporarily relaxes the muscles that pull up your lip and reveal your gums. It’s a gentle relaxation that decreases the elevation of your upper lip, hiding more of your gums when you smile.
Normally, when you smile, your upper lip moves 6-8 millimeters, but hypermobility can double that. Relaxing the muscles with Botox puts your lip mobility in a normal range. As with all Botox treatments, a skilled injector doesn’t make any part of your face appear “frozen.”
If you’ve had Botox injections to treat fine lines, wrinkles, or crow’s feet, the process to treat a gummy smile is similar. Once you’re relaxed in a comfortable, reclining chair, your specialist numbs the treatment area and then injects the botulinum toxin into precisely defined areas between your upper lip and your nose. Treating a gummy smile only requires 1-2 units of Botox.
Each injection takes just a minute or two, and you’re free to carry on with your day afterward. There’s no downtime required. Side effects are mild and may include bruising at the injection site, but you can reduce your risk of bruising by avoiding blood-thinning supplements such as vitamin E prior to your appointment.
The effects of your Botox injections last about three or four months.
You might consider Botox for a gummy smile if:
Are you ready to schedule your Botox consultation at Serendipity Med Spa to learn more? Request an appointment online today. You can also give us a call at 903-664-7776, and we’ll be happy to get you set up.