What is a gummy smile?
A ‘gummy smile’ is one where more than 2mm of gum shows above the teeth when smiling (see before photo below). Approximately 10% of people show their gums when they smile.
At Cityskin in Melbourne we treat gummy smiles with one anti-wrinkle injection either side of the nose
Results appear about 5-7 days after treatment, lasting for up to 3 months depending on the number of ‘units’ used
What causes a gummy smile?
Causes of a gummy smile include:
- The shape and height of the teeth – patients with short upper teeth can have a high gum to tooth ratio. A procedure called ‘crown lengthening’ can be performed by specialist dentists to reduce the amount of gum covering the teeth and remodel the bone underneath the gum to make the teeth look taller.
- The amount of gum covering the teeth – this can again be addressed by the dentist. Excess gum tissue can be removed in a dental cosmetic procedure to make the teeth look taller.
- The amount that the upper lip moves when you smile – patients with gummy smiles often have a very active muscle known as ‘levator labii superioris alaeque nasi’ or LLSAN for short (shown in the diagram below). I like the describe the LLSAN as the muscle that contracts when we ask a patient to ‘snarl’. LLSAN lives alongside the nose and is responsible for lifting the upper lip.
How to treat the gummy smile with anti-wrinkle injections
Anti-wrinkle injections are a great temporary treatment for gummy smiles. At Cityskin clinics in Melbourne we treat thousands of patients each year and we love to treat gummy smiles. It is a technically difficult area to treat but thankfully our team have years of experience.
Treatment involves normally just 2 small injections of 1-3 units per side of the nose. The muscle injected is called the levator labii superioris alaeque nasi (LLSAN).
This muscle is bilateral down the sides of the nose and the action of the muscle is to pull the top lip up when smiling. When a small amount of anti-wrinkle injections are injected into this muscle, it temporarily relaxes the muscle down, which results in showing less gum.
Is gummy smile painful treatment painful?
The area either side of the nose is quite sensitive so we use ice to numb the skin before injection
Gummy smile before after photos
The patients below have had treatment for gummy smile at Cityskin Clinics in Melbourne
How many ‘units’ will I need to treat my gummy smile?
We often use 1 or 2 units on each side of the nose to treat a gummy smile.
Please note that at Cityskin we charge a flat fee of $150 when you treat the gummy smile alone.
Who cannot have gummy smile treatment?
If the bottom of the middle of the lip is lower than the bottom of the outer lip when you smile you cannot have gummy smile treatment. When we treat a gummy smile we relax the LLSAN muscle, which is responsible for lifting the middle part of the lip on smiling. If the middle of your lip is lower than the outer part of the lip before we treat then it will drop further after treatment and cause a Joker smile.
Where can I have gummy smile treatment?
All of our practitioners at Cityskin can perform the treatment.
Cityskin clinics are located in both Melbourne and Sydney.
How much will treatment for gummy smile cost?
At Cityskin we charge a flat fee of $150 when we treat the gummy smile on its’ own. We do not charge a consultation fee. For more information on treatment costs click here.
How long does gummy smile treatment last?
Depending on how strong the muscles are that pull the top lip up to smile are, they only require 1-3 units per side. Because this is such a small dose of anti-wrinkle injections, you may not get the ‘typical’ 3 months out of the treatment. In saying that, most of my patients are satisfied with the results for 2-3 months after treatment, with only 1-3 units per side.
Anti-wrinkle injections start working within 1-3 days post treatment, continue to work for 2 weeks and can lasted to 3 months, depending on how many units were used. ie. less units may not last as long. This is an area where a conservative approach needs to be taken, because if too much product is injected, you won’t be able to smile ‘properly’. More anti-wrinkle injections may be administered at 2 weeks after injection, but there is no ‘reversal’ for anti-wrinkle injections.
How do I book an appointment?
Book a free consultation by clicking on the button below.