Are your front teeth too short?
Front teeth being too short is a complaint we hear often from people that do not like their smile. No matter what the reason your front teeth are too short, know that we can fix them.
Why are your front teeth so short?
The main reasons are that the position of your teeth is too high, the the teeth themselves are too short, and your gums are covering your teeth. You may have a single issue or a combination of issues. Which issues you have will determine what the best solution for you is.
When are the front teeth themselves the problem?
For the teeth themselves to be the problem that means your actual tooth is too short. A normal central incisor is 10.5mm. That length looks good on just about everyone. If you grind your teeth, it does not take long for them to start to be noticeably shorter. This is very common and most people have some sort of wear on their teeth. Worn down teeth usually require us to place dental veneers. Many before and after example of worn down teeth and ground down teeth can be seen in the links from this paragraph.
When is the position of your front teeth a problem?
Some people have teeth that simply do not show even though the length of their teeth is normal. This is usually a genetic issue. It can be that your maxilla, your upper jaw bone, is set up too high or that your lip is too low and covers your teeth too much. This requires we reset your upper jaw bone or make your teeth longer with veneers. The veneer option is much easier, cheaper, and more predictable.
Some people will have an anterior open bite that causes the front teeth to move up. This is often from tongue thrusting. Orthodontics can often fix this but the issue is known to reoccur at high rates.
When are the gums the problem?
If a tooth is not 10.5mm and you do not grind your teeth, then the gums are likely the issue. This can be a simple fix if there is just too much tissue. If it’s only a tissue issue then a laser gingivectomy will make a huge permanent difference. If there is too much tissue and bone then a crown lengthening is the answer. The second procedure involves removing bone and tissue. It is more invasive and has a longer healing time. To determine whether you have too much tissue or too much tissue and bone we need to get you numb and sound for bone. Sound for bone means we probe under the gums and then press hard until we hit bone.