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When I Smile or Talk, You Can't See my Upper Teeth, Have to Forced Smile It?

I had edge to edge teeth when i was younger had braces when i was in my 20's now my teeth are straight and no longer edge to edge, but the problem is when i talk or smile you can't see my upper teeth, I have to force my smile so people can see my upper teeth. I am 38yo what can I do? I don't know if my upper lips too long or my teeth small, my sister is a dentist and a nephew who is a maxillo facial surgeon, I just don't want to tell them this problem, but I feel bad about my smile.

Doctor Answers (5)

Could be both or a combination


There are several things that could cause your teeth to not show during normal conversation or when your lips are at rest.  With your history of being edge to edge for a few years it is very likely that it is at least party due to excessive wear.  It can also be due to the position of your teeth and bone relative to your lip or even your lip being too low relative to your nose.  Depending on which cause(s) this, your treatment could include restorations longer than what you now have, orthodontics, surgery or any combination of those treatments.

Issaquah Cosmetic Dentist

You should see upper teeth when talking


Under normal circumstances, you should see your upper teeth when smiling and your lower teeth when talking.  If this is not the case and you can't live with your imperfections, then you should consider an orthodontic and oral maxillofacial evaluation.  It seems as if something went wrong along the way when you had braces.   Sometimes this might be easy to correct but sometimes precision surgery might be indicated during the first phase of treatment.  Good luck with what you do and please keep us informed.

New York Cosmetic Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews



It sounds like the VERTICAL placement of your upper front teeth is incorrect.  They need to be lower in the face with current lip length.  In some cases surgery is done to assist this but sometimes well planned conventional orthodontics can help.  

If the upper front teeth are to be brought down to be more visible then the lower front teeth will likely need to be intruded.  This will require full braces, careful planning and careful execution of the plan.   I am treating a patient right now with this very problem and she also has two implants in the upper front which aggravates the problem even more because they can not be moved down and will have to have a restorative solution in addition to the orthodontics.  A major part of the solution is to move the lower front down (intrude them) enough to get the required space for proper vertical placement of the upper teeth or restorations.  .These are difficult cases but they sometimes can be done successfully.  If  this is severe, restorative treatment alone is probably not the best alternative here.

Talk to several orthodonticspecialists until you feel you have a really satisfactory explanation and a good workable plan for the solution.  

Phoenix Orthodontist

Upper teeth don't show when smiling.


It would be helpful to see some photos here but the big question is if this is a skeletal or a dental problem.  Your sister and nephew could be of great help here, and perhaps an orthodontic consultation to determine this.  Since your teeth were edge to edge, most likely the edges have worn down and they are shorter now, so you may be a good candidate for veneers that can lengthen your teeth and give you what you want.

Columbus Cosmetic Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Can't see upper teeth?


Your sister will understand she would be a great starting point.... Surgically you can cant the upper jaw to see more teeth or consider orthodontics to extrude your upper teeth or consider cosmetic with crowns or veneers good luck


Kevin Coughlin DMD, MBA, MAGD    CEO Baystate Dental PC

Springfield Cosmetic Dentist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.

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