About 7 per cent of men and 14 per cent of women suffer from a condition known as a gummy smile, which is an excess of gum tissue making their teeth appear too short. The condition is not serious and has no real medicinal disadvantage but it can be responsible for a loss of confidence and low self esteem due to embarrassment.
It is very quick and easy to fix a gummy smile using modern technology in a process called laser gum contouring. In the past gum contouring would have been carried out with a scalpel but using the heat of a laser is a much healthier and easier process to perform.
With a diode laser, the dentist can simply sculpt the desired gum line form the existing excess tissue making the gums and teeth look more natural and healthy together. The heat of the laser vaporises the excess gum tissue while simultaneously cauterising it, preventing blood loss. The heat of the laser also sterilises the tissue reducing the chances of post-procedural infection. It may sound a little unpleasant to burn tissue, but contouring is a relatively painless procedure and your London SE1 dentist can administer anaesthetic before treatment.
The surgery usually lasts between 15 minutes and two hours depending on the amount of tissue that needs to be removed, with recovery time obviously increasing depending on the extent of surgery. All gum tissue will usually be completely healed after four weeks. Once gum contouring is complete some patients also opt for porcelain veneers to complete a more thorough smile makeover but this is not usually necessary.