Gum Recontouring

Do you have an uneven gum line or a “gummy smile”? Maybe you have short teeth that you’re looking to improve cosmetically. In these cases, gum recontouring might be the answer for you to gain confidence in your smile. There are many components to a beautiful smile, but correctly proportioned gums is a key player. This is because the shape of the gums impacts the shape of the teeth and can throw off the balance of your smile. Procedures for gum recontouring change the shape and appearance of your gums to improve your smile. Our experts at Dental Partners of Fifth Avenue can create a proportionate gum line, remove excess gum tissue, as well as add tissue to gums that have receded.

When Gum Recontouring is Appropriate

This procedure helps patients whose gums are uneven or cover too much of their teeth, it is commonly called a “gummy” smile, where the teeth appear smaller than they should. On the other hand, it can also be appropriate in cases where the patient’s gums have receded, exposing more tooth surface than necessary. Receding gums leave the teeth vulnerable and exposed, and the occurrence of pockets between the teeth give bacteria an opportunity to accumulate.

About the Procedure

At Dental Partners of Fifth Avenue (DP5th), we will work with you to understand your goals, be it for aesthetic or health purposes. Then we will create a plan to achieve the most successful results for you and your smile.

To improve a gummy smile, our dentists use a specialized instrument (often a laser) to trim excess gum and bone tissue as needed. The use of a laser also helps to seal the gum tissue, thus allowing it to heal faster – eradicate hollows that trap bacteria to prevent future infections. This fast and comfortable “sculpting” technique is called a gingivectomy, which creates a more natural, youthful smile.


Once the procedure is completed, your gums may feel tender or swollen for the first week or so. We may recommend an analgesic such as Ibuprofen for this. We also recommend that you rinse your mouth with salt water or an antibacterial mouthwash, if necessary, for one to two times per day for two weeks to prevent infection and facilitate the healing process. It is also important to maintain proper oral hygiene following the procedure. Until your gums have fully healed, brushing and flossing will likely need to be more gentle that usual in order to prevent irritation of the sensitive tissue.

If you have a gummy smile or are unhappy with your gum line, schedule an appointment to determine if gum recontouring is right for you.

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