Laser gum contouring is an ideal non-invasive gum procedure for patients interested in reshaping their gum to restore the natural proportions of their teeth and avoid uneven looking gum lines or gummy smiles.
Laser gum contouring is a cosmetic dental procedure that is designed to improve the appearance of your smile, exposing more tooth surface, also sometimes known as gum sculpting or ‘gummy smile’ correction.
For people with gums that are uneven or low, or that have a so called ‘gummy smile’- which is a smile that shows large amounts of the gumline and relatively small teeth when you open your mouth and smile, gum contouring using a laser offers a way to correct the problem, and allow you to smile with confidence.
If you are unhappy with the way that your gums make your smile look and want to find out more about laser gum contouring, or if you are trying to decide if this method of gummy smile correction is the right choice for you. In this article, we will explain the basics, as well as how much laser gum contouring costs.
There are a range of potential reasons for why a person might have uneven gums or a gummy smile, and generally, it comes down to simple genetics, or the luck of the evolutionary draw! However, certain types of health problems that affect the teeth and gums or that have a systemic effect on the body can also cause a gummy smile, uneven gums, or a low gum line; as can certain types of medications, particularly some used to manage high blood pressure.
Regardless of the underlying cause, low or uneven gums or a gummy smile can have a significant impact on your confidence. If the appearance of your teeth and gums makes you unhappy, it might make you reluctant to smile, or lead to you unconsciously using your hand to cover your mouth when you talk, smile or laugh.
Gum sculpting with laser gum contouring can help to correct these problems, regardless of their cause-restoring your confidence in your smile, and allowing you to get on with your life!
Laser gum contouring is a cosmetic dental procedure that is performed by a dentist who is specially trained in this type of smile correction and gum reshaping. Because the treatment is cosmetic, it is not available on the NHS and so you would have to find a private dental practitioner that offers the service, and pay for the procedure as a private treatment.
Historically, gum sculpting was an invasive and painful procedure, usually performed with a scalpel. However, today, laser technology can be used instead to trim down excess gum tissue that lies too low over the teeth, and to reshape the gum line.
This makes the treatment quicker, less invasive and a lot less painful-as well as making recovery quicker and easier too. The laser cauterises the blood vessels in the gums as it trims, making the process less messy and off-putting for patients as well!
Laser gum contouring can be used to treat a small area above just one or two teeth, or the whole length of both the upper and lower gum line. Depending on your requirements, just a very small amount of the gum line, around 1mm-may be trimmed and sculpted, or to treat a very low gum line or to produce a dramatic improvement, several millimetres of gum tissue may need to be removed.
Laser gum contouring is usually performed under a local anaesthetic, infiltrated into the area of treatment with the patient conscious throughout.
Depending on the extent of the gum that needs to be trimmed and how much of the underlying surface of the teeth will then be visible, gum contouring may be combined with the placement of dental veneers or crowns, to complete the overall look and provide a completely new, even and healthy-looking smile.
Providing that you choose a qualified dentist that is trained in medical laser usage for cosmetic gum contouring and your dentist agrees that you are a good candidate for the procedure, the chances of problems or complications arising either during or after treatment are very low.
However, there are some potential issues that can arise with any form of treatment, and some of the potential gum contouring risks that your dentist should discuss with you are:
The use of a local anaesthetic during treatment should ensure that the procedure itself is pain-free or only slightly painful, but during the early days of recovery from the treatment, you may feel some pain or discomfort as your gums heal. Most of the adverse effects that can occur are temporary although there may be certain patients who experience long term alterations and the probability of these must be discussed prior to consent to treatment with your dentist.
How long it takes your mouth and gums to fully recover after treatment will depend on how much of the gum line was trimmed or sculpted, how you care for your teeth and gums, and how quickly your body heals.
During the first week after your laser gum contouring treatment, your gums may feel sore and slightly uncomfortable, and you may notice that your gums are a little swollen. However, this should not affect your ability to eat and drink, although you should choose your food with care during this time, avoiding foods that are tough, crunchy or spicy to avoid irritating your healing gums.
It is important to take good care of your teeth and gums during this time too, brushing and flossing regularly, using a soft brush and taking care to be gentle while thorough.
Your dentist may prescribe some mild pain medications to help you to manage any pain and swelling at home if you are finding recovery uncomfortable, and they will also usually schedule a follow-up consultation after your treatment to check that your gums are healing nicely and allow you to discuss any concerns.
Once your gums have healed and should you be interested in perfecting your smile, you could consider whitening your teeth using either a home whitening kit or going to your dentist to perform in in-office teeth whitening treatment.
If you are wondering how much laser gum contouring costs, the answer to this can be highly variable! The price you pay will depend upon the clinic that you choose for the procedure, the length of gum line to be treated, and how much of the gum needs to be trimmed or sculpted. At times an initial treatment is completed but may require a follow up to adjust or even remove more if need be.
For a small procedure above just one or two teeth, prices start from around £120-£150, and rise exponentially from there, and it is also important to take into account the range of variance between the prices of treatments at different clinics and in different parts of the country.
For more extreme gum reshaping procedures or for the full correction of a gummy smile, your dentist may also advise you to consider incorporating dental veneers or alternative treatments into the process. This can help you to avoid problems such as discolouration at the top of the newly revealed teeth or the gum line growing back down over the teeth, and also to correct gaps, unevenly spaced teeth and other problems. Botox treatment above the upper lip may also be incorporated into the treatment plan as this will prevent the lip from raising ever so high revealing the full extent of the gumline. Discuss this option with your dentist and whether they think you might benefit from the dual treatment.
Always take before and after photos, although, most cosmetic dentists do so in order to document your progress. With the advancement of equipment and techniques, adjusting a gummy smile can now be easily achieved with minimal pain or down time.
If you are looking for a dentist that specialises in laser gum contouring in your local area to help you achieve the perfect smile, look no further. Smileo has over 2,000 private dentists in the UK, all performing a range of dental treatments such as gum contouring, cosmetic bonding, dental crowns and dental veneers, white fillings, teeth whitening or laser gum contouring.
Smileo registered practitioners also specialise in teeth straightening treatments including metal braces, ceramic braces, lingual braces, removable braces such as Invisalign as well as a range of other braces and aligners inlcuding 6 Month Smiles, Inman Aligners or Damon braces. To find a dentist near you, simply enter your preferred location in the search bar below and refine your search results to find the dentist and treatment that best suits your needs.
With Smileo, it has never been easier to meet the face behind your smile.