What Causes a Gummy Smile?

women covering mouth

When you smile, you may notice more of the gums than the teeth. If this is the case, you may have a gummy smile. Perceptions about gummy smiles will vary from a person to another. If you love your smile, even if it’s gummy, then there is no need to change its appearance. However, if a gummy smile bothers you, you may consider an appropriate treatment. But what causes your gums to appear fuller than usual?

A Bad Bite

A gummy smile can arise due to a bad bite. When the lower and upper jaws do not align properly, you have what is called a bad bite. This condition can cause various problems, including jaw pain, crooked teeth, and a gummy smile. Often, a bad bite that makes the upper jaw extend or protrude out more than it should, contributes to a gummy look.

Too Much Gum Tissue

In most cases, having excess gum tissue is considered to be the common cause of a gummy smile. An overgrowth of gum tissue can occur when permanent teeth are erupting. The tissue will cover too much of your teeth resulting in a gummy appearance. On the flip side, infection of your gums can make it appear as though you have excess gum tissue when in reality, the infection causes inflammation and swelling, making the gum tissue to cover much of your teeth. You can prevent this by practicing good oral hygiene. Ensure you brush and floss as our periodontist advices and consider twice-a-year professional cleanings.

Hyperactive Upper Lip

You may have a hyperactive lip if the muscles within the upper lip and beneath the nose are hyperactive. Repeated overuse of the muscles may raise the top lip and expose the gum tissue, making your smile appear gummy. If your gum tissue seems to cover more of your teeth, visit our periodontal team to examine them and determine the best treatment to correct the problem.