When your dental enamel has worn away, the biting surface of your teeth is now the underlying dentin, and this can create discomfort when you chew. When this dentin has worn away, the biting surface of your teeth could actually include exposed dental pulp, which is the nerve inside your tooth, and this can be painful. Wear and tear can be so extreme that your upper and lower teeth no longer connect, meaning that you have literally lost the ability to bite properly. Wouldn't it be nice to reclaim your bite?
The Height of Your Teeth
Bite reclamation is a form of cosmetic dentistry that significantly improves the appearance of your worn teeth while restoring their actual ability to properly function as teeth. Since your teeth are wearing away, their vertical height is progressively reducing. This can be very uncomfortable, and in advanced cases, can affect your personal appearance. It's not only your smile that's affected but when your teeth have lost a considerable amount of their vertical dimension, it can actually shorten your face, making it look compressed (sometimes with increased wrinkles). So how can a cosmetic dentist restore the height of those teeth that have worn down?
The bite reclamation process doesn't hurt as such, but it can be uncomfortable, so you will be given local anesthesia to numb your jaw. Since the wear and tear won't be entirely even across all the biting surfaces of your teeth, your dentist will generally start by filing your teeth to make each surface level. The rebuilding of your teeth involves dental cement, which is the same material used to fill cavities. It's different from person-to-person, but this dental cement might be manually shaped or placed in a mold to replicate the precise shape of the tooth prior to it becoming worn down. In cases of minor wear and tear, the work might be completed in a single session. In more extreme cases, your dentist will complete the work over several sessions.
You will generally be given pain medication to take home. This is to reduce discomfort as your bite readjusts to the newly-restored components of your teeth. The risk of infection is low, but your dentist might provide you with an antibacterial rinse. You will also receive thorough aftercare instructions, covering the best way to care for your reclamation work, along with any temporary dietary restrictions.
It's really remarkable how effective bite reclamation work can be. Your bite might have seen better days, but it can be reclaimed.