I hate how much gums I have showing. Any suggestions? (photos)

I can't stand that so much of my gums show. My dentist told me I could have them surgically pulled back but my mom has had issues with her roots being exposed because of her receeting gums. What are my risks? Is it worth it?i would also like to get them lightened. Any ideas?

Doctor Answers 4

Gummy smile

You are a beautiful woman with a great smile. Although part of your teeth have not fully erupted (altered passive eruption), your skeletal makeup is such that your upper jaw needs some minor adjustment in height (maxillofacial surgery) to correct a condition called VERTICAL MAXILLARY EXCESS. Therefore, gum lift surgery will absolutely not fix your problem on its own. You can try it first and assess the results. You can always go to jaw surgery after if your are unhappy. Good luck. 


Toronto Periodontist
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

In-Person Examination by Periodontist Is Best

Thanks for posting your photos. You have a wonderful smile. There are a number of treatment options designed to reduce the amount of gums that show for people who are concerned about gummy smiles. Recommending a specific procedure, however, requires the detailed results of a physical assessment to diagnose the cause of the gummy smile. As other specialists previously responded, it's possible that you would benefit from oral surgery to reposition your jaw. That may be enough, or you may also need laser gum contouring to get the desired aesthetic results. Good luck.

Alex Farnoosh, DMD
Los Angeles Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Lip Repositioning

Hi, thank you for your question. There are a few options that can address your high smile line. I would suggest lip repositioning. This procedure is designed to reduce the unwanted appearance of the gums. This creates a proportionate amount of gum, teeth, and lip and gives the top lip a fuller more aesthetically pleasing look. I would highly encourage you to look into this procedure further. Best of luck to you! 

Upper jaw

This is a classic example of maxillary excess. This means the upper jaw grew down too long. The most natural and reliable way to fix this is surgically push up the upper jaw. 

Majid Jamali, DMD
New York Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

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.