By Colleen Dolan, LE
Everyone has little things about their appearance that really bothers them. Things so small, most people may not even notice them.
But you notice them.
And they drive you crazy.
For myself, I have always been self-conscious about my teeth. Growing up we could only afford braces for a limited amount of time; while I was grateful that they helped the alignment of my teeth, I was unable to get full results and still had some ways to go to get that perfectly straight smile. A tooth on my right side is lower than the rest, resulting in an uneven looking smile. I found ways to deal with my crooked teeth, I didn’t smile in photos very often and covered my mouth then I laughed. In my adult years, I have toyed with the idea of getting veneers or getting braces again, but like most people, I try to avoid going to the dentist at all costs! Nowadays, I smile without having to worry about showing my “bad tooth side” because I use Botox to correct my smile.
How exactly does Botox straighten my teeth? Well, it doesn’t straighten them exactly, but it does give the illusion of straighter teeth by lowering my upper lip. I realized that my teeth looked crooked mostly from my gum line. I have somewhat of a “gummy smile”, meaning that when I smile, my upper lip moves upwards to show a lot of my gums. The good news is that with a small amount of Botox, you can correct this.
There are three muscles responsible for drawing up the upper lip when we smile: levator labii superioris alaeque nasi (LLSAN), zygomaticus minor, and levator labii superioris (LLS). For my specific anatomy, I want to target the LLSAN, which is a long, thin muscle on either side of the nose. Also known as the “Elvis muscle”, this muscle is responsible for drawing the upper lip when we snarl or smile. Only a small amount of Botox is needed to treat this area, usually 1-3 units per side. It takes roughly 2 weeks to see full results, and only needs to be treated three or four times a year.
Curious about what Botox can do for you? Schedule a complimentary consultation by calling 303.578.3809 or book online.