How to Fix a Gummy Smile


Teeth are likely the first thing people think about when the word “smile” is mentioned. Yet teeth comprise only one part of your smile. And that aspect can be significantly diminished if your gums are covering up your teeth.

As a board-certified prosthodontist, Dr. John R. Phelps is specially trained in smile restoration. He uses advanced technology to create the most precise, comfortable treatments possible. He will help restore the aesthetics of your smile and treat the underlying oral-health problems that caused your smile issues. This blog breaks down what a gummy smile is and how Dr. Phelps can help address yours.

What is a Gummy Smile?

The term “gummy smile” is somewhat subjective — everyone has gums, after all — some people can struggle with overly large gums that obstruct their smile. They’re usually not caused by poor dental hygiene. Instead, gummy smiles are often the result of structural issues in your mouth.

Common causes of gummy smiles include:

  • Unusual or stunted tooth growth that leaves little tooth enamel showing
  • Overactive muscles pulling your upper lip
  • Excessive upper jaw protrusion

Gummy Smile Treatment

Like any smile-restoration procedure, gummy smile treatment is a mixture of science and art.

Gum recontouring allows Dr. Phelps to produce an ideal relation between teeth and gums, and can often be completed in less than one hour at our comfortable and conveniently located Indianapolis office.

With this treatment, Dr. Phelps can reduce gum tissue to help:

  • Expose more of your tooth enamel
  • Improve the apparent size and shape of teeth
  • Reduce visible gum tissue when smiling

In addition to gum recontouring, it may be necessary to provide restorations on specially selected teeth to adequately reduce the appearance of excessive gum tissue. Restorations that may be used to elongate the teeth or to produce a more uniform size and shape include:

These cosmetic dentistry treatments can be combined with recontouring when needed or used as a stand-alone for the correction of a gummy smile. During your consultation with Dr. Phelps, all options will be discussed in greater detail to help you thoroughly plan for your gummy smile treatment. If necessary, Dr. Phelps may also refer you to a local specialist with whom he will collaborate to address the structural issues that cause your gummy smile.

Schedule Your Indianapolis Gummy Smile Consultation Today

Dr. Phelps has more than 25 years of experience restoring his patients’ smiles. As a board-certified prosthodontist, Dr. Phelps underwent years of additional rigorous training and education in the art and science of smile restoration. He has a unique understanding of the challenges associated with oral health and aesthetics.

Dr. Phelps provides gummy smile treatment for men and women living in Indianapolis, Noblesville, Carmel, and all surrounding areas of Indiana.

If you struggle with an unattractive smile and would like to know more about your cosmetic dentistry options, please call Dr. John R. Phelps at 317-548-6217 to schedule a consultation today. 

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