Florida Dental Convention

FDC2023 Session Directory

Gumming Up the Works? Excessive Gingival Display and Smile Aesthetics

Course Code: C69
Speaker: Dr. Maria Geisinger, DDS, MS
CE Hours: 3.00
Start: Saturday, July 1, 2023, 2:00 PM
End: Saturday, July 1, 2023, 5:00 PM
Audience: Dentists, Hygienists, Laboratory Technician, Dental Student


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A smile is a universal greeting and translates into all languages! Smiling individuals are judged as more pleasant and trustworthy and the act of smiling actually releases endorphins that improve the mood of the person who smiles! Psychologists and scientists agree that the simple act of a smile can positively transform a person’s life, as well as the lives of others. Hence, the smile can be considered a critical component to one’s overall happiness and is fundamental to perceived beauty. Dentists are trained to create, maintain and protect the ideal smile, but what should your goals be in achieving that “gold standard” of beauty?

The essential components of an ideal smile involve the relationship between three primary components: the teeth, the lip framework and the gingival scaffold. While beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, factors that allow assessment of overall smile aesthetics include tooth width/height ratio; shape; position; quality of restoration and general arrangement of the dentition, especially of the anterior teeth; upper lip position; buccal corridor; visibility of teeth; and amount of gingival display. Excessive gingival display, or a “gummy smile”, can affect the aesthetic perception of a patient’s smile and negatively influence their self-perception, self-esteem and social behaviors. Furthermore, excessive gingival display is often multifactorial and comprehensive, multidisciplinary treatment is required. This lecture seeks to present data about ideal gingival display, which can vary based upon individual characteristics, the underlying etiologies for excessive gingival display, the potential multidisciplinary treatment options to reduce gingival display and to allow dentists to create a personalized road map to help their patients achieve a vibrant smile.

Learning objectives:

Participants will be able to:

  • list the components of a smile and discuss their role in optimal smile aesthetics.
  • discuss the prevalence of excessive gingival display and its impact on perceived facial and smile aesthetics for individual patients.
  • understand a step-by-step approach to assess cases of excessive gingival display and determine the underlying etiology/etiologies that have caused excessive gingival display in individual patients.
  • discuss personalized treatment options to achieve ideal smile aesthetics based on underlying diagnoses in patients with excessive gingival display.

Partial Sponsor(s):

Florida Association of Peridontists

Speaker: Dr. Maria Geisinger, DDS, MS

About the speaker: Dental degree, Columbia University School of Dental Medicine; master’s degree and certificate in periodontology and implantology, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio; diplomate, American Board of Periodontology; fellow, International Team for Implantology; director of advanced education in periodontology, University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Dentistry.

Disclosure: Neither I nor members of my immediate family have any financial relationships with commercial entities that may be relevant to this presentation.

(c) 2023, Florida Dental Association