5. Severely-Worn Teeth - Attrition

This type of GUMMY SMILE is due to excessive wear of the teeth where there is so little tooth structure left that you see mostly the gum tissues. In most cases, a more involved flap - type of surgery is needed in order to expose adaquate tooth structure upon which crowns (caps) can be built.

Case 5a This 43 year old woman presents with severely worn teeth as a result of her long term habit of grinding and clenching her teeth. The "gummy" appearance results not from too much gum tissue but from having short teeth. A flap surgical approach must be done in order to allow for the removal of some bone and gum tissue in order to expose more tooth length. This type of case usually requires that crowns or laminated facings be placed in order to provide a good cosmetic result.
The excessive, uneven wear of the teeth creates the appearance of a gummy smile
This view of her smile shows the crowns that have been placed upon the surgically-lengthened teeth.
Case 5b This case shows excessive wear that has occurred where the lower teeth are also involved. Surgically increasing the amount of tooth will allow for the best restoration of the teeth.