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Gummy Smile Botox®: a Treatment Option

A gummy smile occurs when a considerable amount of gum tissue shows above the top teeth when smiling. Simply put, the proportions of the teeth, gum tissues, and upper jaw are not balanced.

For many individuals, gummy smiles can be a cause of embarrassment or insecurity. The excessive gingival display can result from a host of issues with your mouth, such as a jaw development problem, incorrect bite, and hyperactive or overly short upper lip.

Gummy Smile Botox

What Causes a Gummy Smile?

So, what causes a gummy smile? A gummy smile is multifactorial in etiology, and more than one factor can present simultaneously. The most common causes include the following:
  • Abnormal or partial dental eruption where teeth appear short and are partially covered by gum tissue.
  • Genetics that are causing the teeth to be small compared to the gums.
  • The upper lip is too short to cover the gums.
  • An upper lip with normal length when the face is resting, but that exposes a lot of gum tissue when smiling as it lifts too high.
  • Gums that are overly long or enlarged (gingival hypertrophy).
  • An overgrowth of the upper jaw makes gums bulge out (maxillary excess).

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Gummy Smile Botox® Injection Points

In most cases, you need one or two units of Botox® to fix a gummy smile.

Botox® is injected in the area between your upper lip and nose to temporarily freeze the muscles that contract or elevate when you smile, which allows you to smile without showing your gums.

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Botox® Gummy Smile Before and After

Botox® is considered one of the non-surgical alternatives to reduce gummy smile caused by the hyperactivity of the levator labii superioris muscle.

In a pioneering study, Botox® injections to treat gummy smiles showed promising results, as it did not require either surgery or anesthesia. Instead, a high cosmetic effect was achieved by reducing the amount of gum exposure by inhibiting and partially blocking by introducing Botox® into the projection area of the following muscles—the levator labii superioris and the zygomatic muscle.

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