Straightening and whitening your teeth can transform your smile, but sometimes, it takes one final step to get those pearly whites looking perfect. It's called tooth reshaping (or dental contouring), and the good news is, it's a quick, painless and cost-effective cosmetic procedure. If a chipped, pointed, overlapping or uneven tooth stands between you and the smile you've always wanted, find out why tooth reshaping may be the answer you've been looking for.
Tooth reshaping is an in-office dental procedure that typically involves the removal of enamel to even out the surface of a tooth. Using a headpiece, the dentist sculpts and/or polishes off rough or pointed edges, and can even trim down the length of a tooth if it appears larger than its neighbors. Usually, anesthesia is not required, unless work is close to the root of the tooth.
If the problem is a chipped tooth, or a tooth that appears smaller than its counterparts, reshaping involves the addition of an enamel-like resin in a similarly straightforward procedure called "bonding". Holes and gaps are sealed by polishing the substance onto the surface of the tooth, or in some cases, the resin may be shaped to match the size of neighboring teeth in advance, and then applied to the problem tooth. Your dentist may recommend wearing a night guard to protect your teeth and prevent future recurrent damage.
The cosmetic reason for tooth reshaping may be obvious, but contouring your teeth could also provide additional oral health benefits, such as:
In certain cases, tooth reshaping may even save patients the cost of orthodontic treatment, if misalignment is due to something minor such as overlapping teeth.
While tooth reshaping is a simple, straightforward process, it is not for everybody. Here are some important things to know if you're considering this cosmetic procedure:
Getting teeth contoured and/or bonded does not preclude additional cosmetic procedures or restorative dental work, but it's best to consult with your dentist about all of your dental goals beforehand to help ensure an efficient treatment plan.
In addition to determining whether it is tooth reshaping, other cosmetic work, or a combination of treatments that will really help your smile, your dentist may be able to suggest ways to prevent future problems by addressing potential pitfalls that may have caused issues in the first place. More often than not, frequent dental visits and better hygiene can help you avoid unnecessary wear and tear on the teeth. Schedule a consultation with your dentist to go over both preventative and corrective courses of action to achieve your dental goals.
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Dr. Rehder is very professional, yet not too serious as he is doing your teeth. He makes it relaxing and is able to keep your mind away from his work (I have never liked going to the dentist, but Dr. Rehder makes the experience as close to pleasant as a dentist visit can be).
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