How To Fix A Gummy Smile With Botox

Botox, the brand name for Botulinum Toxin Type A, as well as its competitor brand cousins, Xeomin and Dysport, can be used in many surprising ways besides ironing out your wrinkles. From sweat management to reduction of nighttime teeth grinding, Botox continues its dominance in the world of aesthetics. One of the interesting ways Botox has been used is to treat gummy smiles. Naturally, Team Eunogo has done the research to determine if a Gummy Smile Correction is right for you.

To begin, let us answer, “What is a Gummy Smile?”

A gummy smile is, simply put, when the upper gum area shows excessively when a person smiles or grins. While this is not unpleasant aesthetically, many people feel very self conscious about revealing such a large part of their mouth beyond their teeth. Many times, this can cause insecurity and you may see people who either don’t smile fully or cover their mouth when they smile. Many people with this condition report that the insecurity also affects their confidence and ability to enjoy themselves fully, without being self-conscious of the way they smile.

What causes a Gummy Smile?

There are several causes for this condition, but the most common is actually a short or hyperactive upper lip. For some people the underlying cause is actually from having long or enlarged gum tissue itself, which shows up more prominently when they smile. Likewise, excessive growth of the upper jaw can have a similar effect.

Who is a good candidate for Botox-based Gummy Smile treatment?

The best candidates for the Botox treatment are those that have a short/hyperactive lip. This is because Botox is intended to relax and contract muscles and lower the upper lip to a more appropriate position. After the toxin is injected, the gums will remain covered for the duration of the effectiveness of the injection (around 6 months).

Those whose gummy smiles are a result of enlarged gum tissue would benefit from Botox treatment but may not solve the issue entirely. The Botox treatment can be done as a compliment to surgical or clinical gum reduction. For those who have excessive upper jaw growth, Botox is not a recommended course of treatment. A consultation with a plastic or maxillofacial surgeon would be far more appropriate for correction using orthognathic surgery.

What are the benefits of using Botox/Dysport/ Xeomin to treat a Gummy Smile?

First, as compared to any surgical or clinical intervention, Botox injections cause little discomfort to the patient. If you have ever had toxin injections for wrinkles before you’ll know that the recovery is as soon as the procedure is finished and the results look natural, appear gradually, and are at maximum aesthetic effect within two weeks of the injection. Additionally, Botox is far more cost-effective as compared to surgical and other treatment options. Finally, because Botox can be administered gradually, the results can be adjusted as the patient requires.

Where will the Botox be injected? 

As always, Eunogo reminds you that it is critical to find a trusted and experienced doctor who knows their way around your facial musculature and the blood vessels that surround those muscles. In this case, the doctor will ask you to give your widest, most wonderful smile, and then assess the two muscles that go into lifting your upper lip: 1) Levator Labii and the 2) Zygomaticus major and minor muscles. It is unlikely that your doctor will inject each of the muscles, but rather, hit that sweet spot on either side of your mouth where both muscles overlap and can give the best results without lowering your lip too much. 

Photo credit: Study by Carla de Sanctis Pecora and Danielle Shitara

A professional will make sure your lip does not come out too high or too low, and the teeth remain perfectly visible, so you can smile without feeling bashful. 

How Many Units of Botox do I need?

Usually it will take between 2-3 units on each side of the mouth to see the optimal results.

Side Effects

As with any injection, it is possible that there may be some minor swelling, tenderness and bruising in the area. Additionally, one must always follow aftercare instructions, and make sure not to touch or massage the treated area after the procedure. Most doctors will advise you not to lie down for about 4 hours after the injection and to avoid taking ibuprofen or aspirin in the 48 hours following your gummy smile correction, as these medicines can sometimes act like blood thinners and make any bruising around the injection site appear much worse. 

Before & After Photos

Photo credit: Gabbay Plastic Surgery

Photo credit: Rose Dermatology

Although we do not currently offer any botox programs for gummy smile on our website at Eunogo, feel free to reach out to us if you're interested in a consultation for gummy smile and we will link you up with a suitable verified clinic.

More info?

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