Exposure of gums with a smile is commonly referred to as “gummy” smile. Studies indicate that people people, including dentists, plastic surgeons, dermatologists, agree that smiles look normal when up to two mm or less gum tissue shows. More than four mm of gum tissue showing was considered “too much” or “gummy” smile by participants in the studies. According to one estimate, about 14 percent of women and 7 percent of men have excessive gingival exposure when smiling.
Until now, dental and gum surgery was the only treatment option for gummy smile, but this type of surgery is often costly and painful. There are two types of surgical procedures to reduce gum exposure for gummy smile. One way is to sever the muscles that elevate the upper lip so it can no the upper lip does not rise as high; another way is to do a teeth lengthening surgery that actually cuts away gum tissue so the crown appears longer.
For the last few years neuromodulators such as Botox have been used by experienced physicians for off label uses such as this particular case.
Neuromodulators, (Botox, Xeomin or Dyport) are cautiously injected into the lip elevator muscles which weakens the lip raise and reduces the exposure of gums while smiling.
A study in Aesthetic Surgery Journal published in March 2014 found that off-label use of nuromodulators (Botox, Xeomin, Dysport) was a safe and effective alternative treatment for gummy smile in the right hands. The downside of Botox, Xeomin for gummy smile is that the effect of these medications lasts about 3-4 months and the treatment has to be repeated to maintain the results. The cost of Botox for gummy smile is also more appealing than surgery: Botox costs average $350 around the country and is charged as a professional fee for the treatment instead of per unit due to the expertise required for this type of treatment.
To make an appointment for correction of gummy smile with Botox or Xeomin in Dallas or Southlake, please call our office at 888-210-9693