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Gum Contouring and Reshaping: Gummy Smile

Rehabilitating 'Gummy Smiles' Washington DC with Gum Contouring

Premier cosmetic dentists providing gum contouring and reshaping with top-quality treatment methods and results.

Do You Have a Gummy Smile That Shows Too Much of Your Gum Line?

Patients often feel that their smiles are too “gummy” due to gum tissue covering their teeth, making them seem smaller than they actually are. Or, they might be experiencing receding gum tissue, which exposes too much teeth. In either situation, they are frequently self-conscious about their smile.  See, below, how we solved this patient’s frustration with her gummy smile.

Our Specialists Can Diagnose & Correct the Issues Causing Your Gummy Smile

If you are dealing with these issues, the first thing you should do is contact Elite Prosthetic Dentistry to learn more about Dr. Marlin’s Ultimate Smile Makeover. As a cosmetic makeover, this process includes several cosmetic dentistry procedures, including dental veneers, crowns and implants, and gum contouring and reshaping.      

Do You Feel Self-Conscious Due to a Gummy Smile? Understand Gummy Smile Causes & Treatment Options.

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Actual Patient Smiles After Gum Contouring & Reshaping Treatment

Patient: Was dissatisfied with her gummy smile presentation

Patient: Unhappy how her gums dominated her smile

Rehabilitating Your Gummy Smile with Our Dental Specialists Starts with Scheduling a Consultation

How Can a Gummy Smile be Fixed?

We provide Zirconia, eMax, and Porcelain Fused to Noble Metal crowns, each of which has definite indications and contra-indications for its specific use. As a part of his detailed analysis for each patient, Dr. Marlin determines the best materials for your therapy and discusses them with you at your consultation.

Dental crowns can be used to:

  • Protect broken or severely decayed teeth
  • Cover misshapen or severely discolored teeth
  • Replace missing teeth
  • Provide a more functional bite
  • Repair functional chewing problems
  • Strengthen a tooth following root canal

During your consultation with award-winning prosthodontist Dr. Gerald Marlin, he will carefully listen to your concerns and provide honest and valuable information about the best solutions for your smile. These could include gum contouring and reshaping, a cosmetic procedure that can change the shape of your gums to provide you with a “simply radiant, simply natural” smile!

If you would like to take that first step to become proud of your smile, contact Elite Prosthetic Dentistry online or call (202) 244-2101 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Marlin. He and our expert team welcome dental patients from the Washington metropolitan area, including Arlington, Alexandria, Bethesda, and Potomac, as well as from around the country and abroad. Our office is conveniently located one block from the Friendship Heights Metro Stop on Wisconsin Ave in the Chevy Chase-Friendship Heights region.

What Is Gum Contouring and Reshaping?

If your gums are positioned too low or too high on your teeth, you may consider gum contouring surgery. Also known as gum reshaping, this cosmetic dental procedure can even take out an uneven gum line and give you a smile that makes you proud and boosts your self-confidence.

Complete Cosmetic Breakdown: as stated, this patient had been very unhappy her whole adult life with how her teeth and gums were dominating her smile, and, therefore, her overall appearance. She presented with seemingly intractable, multiple problems: she had very unsightly crowns with her two front teeth being very wide, square, and unnatural; she was missing her left lateral incisor with her left canine, a much bigger tooth, being positioned in that spot; her gum tissue was very uneven being too low around her right canine and lateral incisor, squeezed out between her two front teeth and much higher on the left side than on the right; the crowns were “dead white” and opaque and flashing, especially in relation to her darker gingiva and complexion.

Example Case: Resolving her Smile with a Complete Cosmetic Makeover and Gum Contouring and Reshaping:

Screenshot (733)-min To begin her smile makeover, we first referred her to a periodontist who reshaped the gum tissue throughout her upper arch: he recontoured the gingiva between her central incisors, he raised the gum tissue up at her upper right canine and lateral incisors and posterior teeth; he reshaped the gingiva around her upper left canine to be similar to the tissue contours around a left lateral incisor and raised up the gingiva around her upper left teeth. When we subsequently placed her temporary crowns, she had an immediate smile makeover in one day using oral sedation to take the edge off the procedure.

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Then our custom, in-house laboratory did the following: using line angles on the two central incisors, which are exactly the same width as the original ones, we made them appear narrower and in balance with her other teeth; the left canine was shaped to look more like a natural lateral incisor in spite of the much bigger underlying tooth; the right lateral incisor and canine were fabricated to be less prominent, and the posterior teeth were made to appear longer in order to be in balance with her anterior ones. Finally, our technician used an extra amount of translucent porcelain to allow her crowns to have a better blend with the surrounding darker gingiva and complexion. Needless to say, she is thrilled with her “simply radiant, simply natural” new smile. We are very happy that her natural gregarious personality is even more powerful as a result of her new, self-confident cosmetic makeover.

Gum recontouring surgery also prevents periodontal disease (gingivitis or gum inflammation, and/or bone loss), the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. In other words, gum contouring may be essential to your oral health beyond aesthetic factors.

Dr. Gerald Marlin

Premier Dental Service

Dr. Gerald Marlin is a leading specialist in implant, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry. One of the only prosthodontists with an on-site lab, Dr. Marlin has been voted “Top Dentist” by his peers for more than 20 years in a row in Washingtonian Magazine’s annual “Best Dentist” survey, and is considered the most experienced prosthodontist in the D.C. area.

Why Choose Dr Gerald Marlin?

  • Voted Best DC Dentist 20 years in a Row by other dentists
  • Works closely with his in-house technician to achieve custom aesthetics and a very precise fit.
  • Provides crowns lasting over 35 years
  • 3,600 surgically inserted and restored dental implants 

Who is a Good Candidate for Gum Contouring and Reshaping?

Gum reshaping may provide you with a simple solution for improving the appearance of your smile. However, the following factors should also be considered before deciding to move ahead with the procedure:

  • Oral health: If your struggle with gum disease or tooth decay is affecting the health of your teeth and gums, you may want to first restore your oral health before seeking cosmetic procedures.
  • Cosmetic needs: Gum reshaping makes your teeth appear larger or smaller by moving the gum line, but, in many cases, the procedure will need to be done in conjunction with crowns or veneers, since it cannot change a tooth’s deficient shape, color, or position .

Ultimately, Dr. Marlin will assess these and other issues and will clarify whether gum reshaping is right for you at your consultation. After they examine your teeth and gums, they will be able to make the best recommendations for enhancing your smile and correcting any other oral challenges you might have. 

What Conditions Can Gum Contouring and Reshaping Treat?

When your gums are uneven, or if they cover too much or too little of their teeth, then you may be a good candidate for gum contouring or gum reshaping to improve your smile line. However, gum contouring may be a treatment option for other dental reasons, including periodontal disease.

While gum recession is typically caused by gum disease, it also could be due to excessive tooth brushing, certain prescription drugs, or even your genetics resulting in thin tissues over your roots. Restoring your gum tissue may become vital for preserving the bone over your teeth, thereby contributing to their longevity.


Real Patient Results

When it comes to your smile, you deserve the best. Review our many satisfied patients’ incredible transformations by viewing our before and after gallery!

What are the Benefits of Gum Contouring and Reshaping?

Beyond the aesthetic aspects of the way your smile looks, having too much gum tissue may be a health concern where excess tissue can trap food particles. Since these may be difficult to remove even with diligent flossing and brushing, they can lead to accelerated tooth decay. Living with this condition often results in recurring gum irritation and increased susceptibility to periodontal disease or gingivitis.    

Due to these factors, Dr. Marlin may recommend gum reshaping, crown lengthening, pocket reduction, or other procedures. In certain situations, trimming back the gumline lessens the possibility of tooth decay and periodontal issues, better preserves existing teeth, and helps your teeth stay healthier for longer.

Once your gums are contoured to your liking, they will remain that way permanently with proper oral hygiene and periodic visits to your hygienist. This is precisely the reason why gum reshaping is such a worthwhile investment. Nothing artificial is added to your teeth—either your gum tissue is shortened making the teeth appear longer, or it is reshaped to make it fuller, with results that can last a lifetime, giving you back that healthy, beautiful smile.

What are the Risks of Gum Contouring and Reshaping?

Gum contouring is considered to be absolutely safe.      

The only real potential risk of gum contouring is the development of an infection after the procedure. However, if you take care of your teeth and gums and practice good oral hygiene throughout your recovery, your risk of developing any infection is extremely low.      

How Is Gum Contouring and Reshaping Done?

Unlike other cosmetic dental procedures, gum contouring requires a single visit with a comparatively short recovery time.

The procedure may involve using a surgical instrument, a laser, or radiosurgery to reshape the excess tissue. It is generally painless, especially since a very effective analgesic such as ibuprofren (Advil, Motrin, etc.) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) is given right after the procedure and continued thereafter. Some patients may experience additional discomfort afterward, requiring a stronger painkiller for a more comfortable recovery.

Gum Contouring to Reshape Excessive Tissue

If your teeth look small due to excessive gum tissue, giving you a “gummy” smile — Dr. Marlin or a recommended periodontist will remove excess gum tissue using a laser or surgical instrument, while a new gum line is sculpted to expose more of your tooth, in a procedure usually taking 1-2 hours, depending upon how many teeth are having the gum tissue treated.

Gum Grafting over the Tooth Root to add Tissue for Root Protection and Aesthetics

If your teeth appear elongated or discolored, you could have too little gum tissue, a condition known as gum recession. Receding gums also expose the root of the teeth to harmful bacteria and plaque, leading to tooth decay and bone loss over the denuded root. While gum recession typically occurs on just a few teeth, it can also affect the whole mouth.

Dr. Marlin will recommend a periodontist to perform the gum grafting procedure.


Problem-Solving Prosthodontics

Meet Dr. Gerald Marlin

Award-winning prosthodontist Dr. Gerald Marlin delivers advanced dental care and world-class treatments to everyone who enters our comfortable and welcoming office. 

Recovery From Gum Contouring and Reshaping

Healing from gum surgery is relatively short, taking anywhere from a week to ten days. You may feel some discomfort during that time, but you should be able to get back to your daily activities without much downtime.

While you heal, you will need to eat soft foods and follow the post-surgery instructions for caring for the surgery site. You will receive written instructions from us or your periodontist, depending upon who performed the procedure. If you experience any signs of infection like increased pain or swelling, contact your designated periodontist or our expert team immediately.

During your recovery, there are a few things you can do to make the healing process easier and more comfortable, including:

  • Being as gentle as possible with your oral hygiene practices, including brushing and flossing
  • Using an alcohol-free mouthwash
  • Taking over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol)
  • Avoiding spicy or crunchy foods as well as those with tiny seeds
  • Enjoying soft foods
  • Taking plenty of time to rest

With these things in mind throughout your recovery process, your experience can be streamlined and get you back to your regular routine even faster.

Elite Prosthetic Dentistry’s Problem-Solving Approach

Dr. Marlin and his team at Elite Prosthetic Dentistry are well-known amongst their colleagues and patients for their exceptional ability to solve even the most complex dental problems. Their methods have helped countless patients achieve a brilliant smile, often under the most desperate circumstances.

During the process of your treatment, Dr. Marlin will:

  • See you for a friendly and informative consultation in which you can meet him and the team, ask questions, and discuss your different options.
  • Identify your problems using advanced dental technology and present his findings in a presentation containing photos, scans, and models to show you what is possible.
  • Formulate a carefully considered plan of action for your condition, including alternative treatment plans, where applicable.
  • Have all materials created to specification in our in-house lab.
  • Execute this plan with meticulous precision, high levels of safety, and utmost professionalism.

Dr. Marlin understands that choosing gum contouring and reshaping is a significant decision. Because of this, he encourages each patient to take the time to fully consider their options before proceeding.

How Much Does Gum Contouring and Reshaping Cost in Washington DC?

Because we tailor each procedure to meet our patient’s particular concerns, the cost of this treatment will vary. We will discuss procedural costs with you once Dr. Marlin and, when indicated, a periodontist providing adjunctive gum therapy has adequately evaluated you. We also have financing and flexible payments, available for those interested.

Schedule Your Washington DC Gum Contouring and Reshaping Today!

If you are ready to schedule your gum contouring and reshaping appointment with our trusted, experienced, caring prosthodontists, please call 202-244-2101 or contact us online today. We welcome patients from Chevy Chase, Bethesda, Washington DC, and all surrounding communities. Dr. Marlin and our team look forward to meeting you soon! Your beautiful new smile awaits.