If you're not totally loving the look of your teeth, there is some good news, they may be able to be reshaped. Our Smiletown orthodontists explain the tooth-shaping process.
What Is Teeth Shaping or Contouring?
Tooth shaping or contouring is a cosmetic dentistry procedure designed for those who might wish to shorten teeth that are too long, or reshape and contour teeth that are uneven, chipped or jagged. By removing small amounts of enamel from your teeth, our reshaping and contouring service may help improve the look of your smile.
Is Teeth Shaping Harmful For Your Teeth
Thankfully, there is minimal to no risk involved with tooth contouring. It is generally thought to be a more conservative dental procedure but if your tooth is already weakened due to damage or decay it can become riskier. In this case your dentist may be able to add supporting material to strengthen your tooth, especially if it needs to hold a crown.
Potential Benefits of Tooth Shaping
Teeth shaping has many purposes and may be able to help with a number of oral health concerns.
Filing a chipped tooth
If you have a tooth that has been chipped, it may not be detrimental to your oral health, but it may start to hurt your confidence. If you choose to get your tooth reshaped, it will have uniform edges again which may help you feel better about your smile.
Creating more room in your mouth
If you have larger teeth or even a smaller jaw, it may not look as aesthetically pleasing as you would like. This may also cause crowding leading to jaw pain, crooked teeth, and misalignments. If you decide to shave some of your teeth away, it may create some room to minimize crowding.
Filing teeth before braces
Braces and retainers can help correct misaligned or crowded teeth. They shift the teeth into different positions to reduce crowding and wrongly aligned teeth. For some individuals, the orthodontist may carry out minor tooth or teeth shaving to correctly place the orthodontic devices.
Placing a dental crown
A crown is placed to cover a damaged tooth or one undergone a root canal procedure. Before placing the crown, the tooth is prepared, which can include trimming. Once your dentist applies the crown, the shaved or slenderized tooth will be hidden, so you don’t need to worry about anything impacting your smile.
Veneer teeth shaving
The purpose of a veneer is similar to a crown – to hide the flaws of a tooth that has been damaged, stained, or chipped.
In some cases, a dentist may slightly shave a tooth to make space for a veneer (this is done so the veneer wouldn’t protrude too much.) But the filing for veneer is way lesser than done for a crown. The teeth opposite your veneer may also need a bit of shaving, so they look alike.
Other than hiding the flawed teeth, veneers can help with the following cosmetic issues:
- Severely discolored teeth that whitening can’t treat
- Smaller-than-average teeth
- Misshapen teeth
- Teeth with abnormal length
Adjusting your bite
Not everyone has perfect teeth alignment. To check if you have a correct bite, open your mouth and then close it in a way that your top set of teeth rests on the bottom set. Do they perfectly match each other? If not, you may need treatment for bite adjustment. Your dentist may file down your teeth to avoid the teeth overlapping each other.
For instance, your canine may be longer than the neighboring teeth, impacting your bite. Teeth that don’t align correctly can disorient your bite. This, in return, can result in several issues such as loose teeth, pain in the head, and sore jaw muscles.
Treating issues with your bite can eradicate oral problems such as sensitive teeth and toothache. After the treatment, you’ll be able to close your jaw properly.
Who Might Qualify For Tooth Shaving?
If you’re someone who has a rough-edged tooth or a chipped one and it is highly visible and impacts your smile and confidence, you may make a good candidate for tooth shaving.
You may also be a candidate for tooth reshaping if you have issues with your bite. Teeth that don’t fit with each other in the correct positions can cause headaches and jaw pain. In the worst case, non-fitting teeth can lead to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.
The ideal candidates for tooth contouring are people with healthy gums and teeth, free from gum infections, tooth decay, and root canals. If you think this may be you, contact our dental team today.