Are you unhappy with the shape, size, or position of your teeth? Sometimes, the smallest adjustment is all that is needed to really enhance your whole appearance. If you have minor imperfections then tooth reshaping, or dental contouring, might be the answer for you. Tooth reshaping can correct simple issues, such as irregularly shaped teeth, tiny chips in teeth, or excessively pointy cuspids, in a simple procedure during a regular visit to your dentist.
This conservative, cost effective cosmetic dentistry procedure involves removing small amounts of tooth enamel (the outer covering of the tooth) using specialized instruments. Removing just a few millimeters in the right places can have a drastic effect. Your dentist will likely begin with dental X-rays to ensure that your teeth are healthy. Anyone with significant tooth decay or unhealthy gums is not a good candidate for this procedure. Then, after careful analysis and consultation, your teeth may be marked to outline the desired changes. A sanding instrument is then used to artfully minimize imperfections on the surface of the teeth. Strips that resemble sandpaper are then used to contour the sides of the teeth before they are finally smoothed and polished in the final step. Because only the surface of the tooth is affected, the procedure is generally painless and no anesthesia is required. In addition to improving the look of your teeth, tooth sculpting can actually improve your oral health by removing small overlaps and other imperfections where plaque can build up and cause tooth decay. Your risk of gum disease can actually be lowered with this cosmetic procedure.
Unlike other cosmetic dental procedures, tooth reshaping gives a very subtle change. It’s perfect for someone who has one tooth that’s slightly askew, or longer than others around it. Often, this process is the precursor to other treatments, such as bonding or dental veneers. If you’re looking to make a more drastic change in your smile, you may want to consider these alternatives. If you have minor imperfections that you’ve often wished you could correct, talk to your dentist about whether tooth sculpting is a good option for you.