The enamel is the surface coating of your tooth. It’s the hardest matter in the human body, harder than any other bone. At the same time, however, tooth enamel is one of the most environmentally exposed parts of our body. Tooth enamel is often scratched, bruised, chipped or damaged some other way.
In most cases small damage done to the tooth enamel does not affect our health at all and is purely an aesthetic issue. In such cases cosmetic dentists regard to it as having excess tooth enamel which should be removed in order to give the tooth it’s natural look.
Enameloplasty is a procedure of “shaving off” the surplus tooth enamel to improve the appearance of a tooth. Tooth enamel does not have any nerves, so in most cases no anaesthetics need to be applied. After an enameloplasty the treated tooth is again aligned with other teeth in the mouth.
In some cases enameloplasty can be useful for preparing the teeth for onlays and veneers. Scratches and tiny holes become sealed air bubbles if a veneer or onlay is attached to these, and in long term these can grow bacteria which turn these tiny bubbles into tooth cavities. Enameloplasty will make a tooth perfectly flat so there are no air-filled gaps beneath the veneer.
The enameloplasty can be used for reshaping and polishing some artificial tooth surfaces as well. It applies to veneers and crowns, though not implants, since titanium can’t be polished with ease.
Not everyone is suitable for enameloplasty. In some persons enamel would be too thin which is due to genetics, or it may be artificially thinned by a previous enameloplasty treatment. These treatments may not be repeated since tooth enamel does not regenerate. It is important to have a thorough examination of your teeth before the treatment, best by the same dentist. It is important to note that enameloplasty is not a tooth whitening procedure. Tooth enamel is translucent and has little impact on your teeth colour. Tooth whitening can be carried out separately after enameloplasty.
Dentists perform the treatment using a sanding agent or diamond bur. The entire procedure is somewhat similar to car detailing, it ends with a fine polishing which will make your tooth enamel shiny again. There is no recovery period for enameloplasty and the result is immediately visible.