If your teeth are made of strong, organic material, how is it possible for your dental professional to reshape them? What does teeth reshaping treatment cost? We promise it’s all much simpler than it seems! Stick around, and we’ll explain what this procedure is, when it’s used, and how much to budget for it.
Teeth Reshaping Treatments and Costs
Medically Reviewed By Colgate Global Scientific Communications
Teeth reshaping treatment (also called teeth contouring or odontoplasty) is an effective and painless method for fixing many dental ailments. During this procedure, your dental professional uses a drill or laser to remove some of your teeth' hard outer layer known as the enamel.
Because enamel is vital to protect the softer insides of your teeth, this procedure is limited by the amount of enamel your dental professional can safely remove without weakening the tooth. If your enamel is thin, teeth shaping may not be a good solution for your needs.
Teeth reshaping can be used to help correct:
- Cosmetic complaints
- Chipping or cracks in your teeth
- Uneven or poorly aligned teeth
- Issues from grinding your teeth (also known as bruxism)
- Imperfections that make it hard to clean between your teeth
Before performing the reshaping, your dental professional will likely employ X-rays to gain more precise insight into the structure of your teeth and guide the procedure. After the reshaping, they will ensure that your bite aligns properly before smoothing and polishing the affected teeth.
It might relieve you to hear that teeth reshaping is often fairly simple and takes under an hour to complete! Because the procedure doesn’t involve your nerves, pulp, or gums, it will typically cause no pain and is typically performed without any numbing agent.
Tooth reshaping is often used in tandem with other methods to address other dental concerns. Read below, and we’ll cover when bonding is used.
Bonding refers to a technique your dental professional may employ to add volume and material to supplement the shape or size of your tooth (or teeth). The putty-like resin that matches or improves the shade of your tooth, “bonds” to it before hardening.
Before bonding, your dental professional will apply a conditioning liquid or smooth your tooth using a drill-like tool so the resin can form a strong connection. They will then shape the resin to match your tooth and fit with your bite before shining a light on it to solidify the bond.
Unlike teeth reshaping, bonding may require your dental professional to numb part of your mouth to ensure you’re comfortable throughout the procedure.
According to American Cosmetic Dentistry, the cost of teeth reshaping (also called contouring) treatment typically is between $50 to $300 per tooth before (and if!) insurance helps cover it. Your insurance may help cover this procedure if it resulted from an injury or your dental professional deems it necessary to prevent dental problems. They may not help cover the cost if the procedure is cosmetic.
Talk to your dental professional to see if insurance will help cover this procedure and for their recommendation on the most effective and budget-friendly options that best fit your need.
Luckily, teeth reshaping shouldn’t have any recovery time at all (unless it’s done at the same visit as other, more invasive dental procedures). This, combined with its other benefits, make it an attractive option for those who qualify.
Caring for your reshaped teeth is like your regular dental routine but is especially important because your enamel may be thinner after the procedure.
Tips for caring for your reshaped teeth include:
- Avoiding chewing on ice and non-food items like pens and fingernails
- Gently brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day with non-abrasive toothpaste to avoid wearing down your enamel
- Cleaning thoroughly between your teeth once a day using floss, an interdental brush, or a flossing device
- Skipping out on smoking and tobacco products
- Visiting your dental professional at least every six months
Teeth reshaping is a safe, effective, and wallet-friendly way to confront some cosmetic and structural issues with your teeth. If you’re a good candidate, this procedure could help strengthen your smile and enhance your confidence without recovery time. You’re now prepared to make an informed choice with an understanding of teeth reshaping.
This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.