No More Gummy Smiles

America (by which I mean the United States here) is just so American! It was pretty wonderful being over there for a week and visiting Dallas and New York to get those American flavours back into my system after a longish absence. And there’s nothing quite like watching American morning television to get the weirdest tastes (Surreal Strawberry, perhaps?). Case in point: on some morning show featuring a panel of TV doctors we were introduced to the previously unknown problem of the “gummy smile”…

On hearing about this I assumed we’d be seeing people with like an inch of gum visible above their teeth when they smiled, which would somehow be whittled down to a manageable level through some clever intervention. But no, in fact it turns out that “gummy smile” is the problem you have when someone can see any of your gums at all when you smile, even the merest hint, which until now I’d thought was kind of incredibly normal. TV MDs to the rescue!

So they get this woman who suffers terribly from gummy smile (i.e. has a normal and pleasant looking smile) and they inject something (presumably Botox or a relative) into her upper lip in order to disable her lip muscles sufficiently that her smile simply cannot reveal gum. She was left with this super weird thin smile that managed to look simultaneously timid and tepid and which everyone on the doctor panel and in the studio audience was delighted with. Who knew?

And spending time in the US is just a joyous chain of such funny and alien things. It’s lovely!

21 May 2012
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