Perfectly Shaped Teeth: What You Need To Know About Enamel Shaping

Dentist Articles

According to recent research from the American Association of Orthodontists, more than one third of Americans are unhappy with their smile, and over 36% of Americans believe that they would have a more fulfilling social life if they had a better smile. Americans who are unhappy with the shape of their teeth and find it uneven may benefit from a cosmetic process known as enamel shaping.

What Is Enamel Shaping?

The enamel is the outermost layer of your teeth. If you are unhappy with the shape of your teeth, you may want to reshape and contour the enamel. For example, many patients that opt for enamel shaping find that the edges of their teeth are simply not smooth enough. In fact, the edges may be serrated. 

Enamel shaping does not require any form of anesthesia or sedation, as it is minimally invasive and rather painless. You and your cosmetic dentist will first need to come to agreement regarding the best shape based on the overall structure of the surrounding teeth. The shape will be drawn onto the enamel for the cosmetic dentists to follow. Cosmetic dentists will rely on the same tools that are used during professional teeth cleaning to polish off the problem areas and reshape the tooth to its desired shape.

What Are the Costs Associated with Enamel Shaping?

In comparison to numerous other alternatives in cosmetic dentistry, enamel shaping is relatively inexpensive. Since patients do not require any anesthesia, sedation or additional equipment and materials for the process to be completed, the cost will be kept to a minimum. You can expect the cost of enamel shaping each tooth to be around $50 to $300 per tooth. The variation in the cost will be dependent on:

  • the amount of work that needs to be done with the enamel shaping. While some patients may only want the bottom edge to be sanded down and polished for an even surface, other patients may want the shape of their enamel to be completely altered.
  • the geographic location of each patient. 
  • whether a dental x-ray was needed to confirm the condition of the teeth.
  • the labor costs that each individual cosmetic dentist charges. 

What Are The Side Effects of Enamel Shaping?

Enamel shaping will offer immediate results; however, they can only make subtle changes. If you want something a bit more dramatic, then you will need to opt for bonding or veneers instead. Enamel shaping is a relatively safe procedure as only about 1 to 2 mm of enamel is ever removed, so there really isn't much to worry about. However, keep in mind that the layer of enamel covering each teeth will not regenerate, and if too much enamel has been removed, you can expect side effects like:

  • dental deterioration. The enamel is one of the hardest layers in your teeth and responsible for maintaining the structural integrity. If too much enamel has been removed, your teeth may be more vulnerable to damages, like chips and cracks, upon impact.
  • increased teeth sensitivities. The enamel prevents particulates in the oral environment from reaching the dentin layer and coming into contact with the inner dental pulp, which contains nerves. Without a strong or thick enamel layer, you may experience a permanent increase in teeth sensitivity. 

To avoid experiencing any side effects, make sure that the cosmetic dentist will apply a fluoride varnish overtop the teeth after the procedure has been completed. The varnish will effectively seal off all exposed tubules that are present in the enamel. This will help prevent teeth sensitivities and further dental decay.


If you are unhappy with the overall shape of your teeth, enamel shaping can make the subtle changes needed for a noticeable difference. The process is relatively quick and inexpensive. In addition, you don't need to worry much about side effects, making it an ideal option. For more information, check out websites like


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All About Full and Partial Dentures

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