When (and Why) to Consider Laser Gum Reduction

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When (and Why) to Consider Laser Gum Reduction

Does it seem like you have more gums than teeth? Laser gum reduction can quickly and painlessly reshape your gums, so you can show off your pearly whites instead of your pink gums. Here are some of the reasons this treatment might be right for you.

Your teeth are straight, white, and healthy, but if your “gummy” smile makes you keep your mouth shut, you might be a good candidate for laser gum reduction.

Dr. Nicole Thompson at Lovely Smiles Orthodontics in Richmond, Texas, offers this quick and painless treatment to our patients with overgrown gums. Here, she takes a closer look at how it works, who can benefit, and why you might want to consider the treatment for yourself.

Reasons you have excess gum tissue

Genetics is the main culprit in gummy smiles; some people are just born with excess gum tissue. 

Gingival hyperplasia, gum overgrowth, is the other reason for a gummy smile. Although this condition can be genetically linked, it can also be acquired if, for example, you have hereditary gingival fibromatosis, a rare disorder. Non-hereditary gingival hyperplasia may be due to:

  • Certain diseases, such as Crohn’s disease, anemia, HIV, or diabetes
  • Pregnancy
  • Immunosuppressants, calcium channel blockers, or anti-seizure drugs 

Medically related gingival hyperplasia typically fades when the medical condition resolves, or you stop taking the medicine involved. If it remains, Dr. Thompson can correct your gums with laser gum reduction.

What is laser gum reduction?

Laser gum reduction is a cosmetic dentistry treatment that reshapes the contours of your gums. Thanks to advances in dental technology, Dr. Thompson can perform this treatment without scalpels and stitches. With precise laser energy, she carefully sculpts the edges of your gums to trim them down to the right size and shape.

Instead of cutting your gums, the laser vaporizes and cauterizes them in the same instant. That means a more comfortable procedure, less bleeding, and a greatly reduced chance of infection.

Although this may sound intimidating, it happens so quickly that most people barely feel it. Before she gets started, Dr. Thompson numbs your gums so you won’t feel a thing. 

Reasons to consider laser gum reduction

If your gums are covering your teeth because they’re infected and swollen — laser gum reduction is not for you. Dr. Thompson treats your gum infection first. If your gum tissue is still excessive when your gums are healthy, you may be a good candidate at that point.

Here are some of the most common reasons you may want to opt for laser gum reduction:

To reduce the look of a gummy smile

The top reason our patients get laser gum reduction is to get rid of their gummy smiles. If your grin is more gum than teeth, this may be the treatment for you.

To even out lopsided gums

In some cases, the gums only overtake one or two teeth, and the rest are normal. Laser gum reduction trims away only the excessive tissue and evens your gum line.

To balance proportions

In addition to a gummy smile, too much gum tissue can make your teeth look too small. By removing that excess tissue, more of your teeth are visible when you smile, which gives you symmetry and balance. 

To aid dental procedures

Laser gum reduction may play a critical role in your dental care, as well. For example, if you have large pockets in your gums caused by periodontitis (advanced gum disease), laser gum reduction can reshape and resize the tissue to prevent further infection.

Also, if you need a crown or are getting veneers, it may help to trim away some of your gum tissue to accommodate the treatment. 

If you want to find out more about laser gum reduction and whether it’s right for you, call or click to reach us at Lovely Smiles Orthodontics today.