Your smile is an important part of your ability to eat and speak, but it is also an essential part of your appearance. If your smile is not healthy and appealing, you may struggle with how you look, which can affect your self-esteem and confidence level. In addition, issues with your smile will most likely make you smile less, which can affect others around you.
One common problem some people face is having unusually small teeth. These smaller teeth could prevent you from chewing properly, but they will also affect your appearance and how you feel about your smile. Thankfully, help is available for those affected by smaller teeth. This guide will help you understand the causes and treatment options.
In most cases, having small teeth is genetic. This means that the trait is passed down to you by family members, such as your parents or grandparents. Just like some people are born with green eyes or freckles, you may develop small teeth because of genetics.
Surprisingly, your teeth may just look small, which is a possibility if you have an issue with your gum tissue. Excessive gum tissue, known as a gummy smile, or swollen gums may cover more of your teeth than normal, making it look like your teeth are smell when they are actually normal size.
Certain dental disorders can also affect the size of your teeth. For example, amelogenesis imperfecta is a condition that causes teeth to be abnormally small, but that is not the only sign of this disorder. Amelogenesis imperfecta also causes the teeth to be very weak, brittle, and discolored. This disorder is rare, though, affecting about 1 in 14,000 people in the United States.
It is important to note that treatment is not always necessary. If you have small teeth that are affecting your appearance and quality of life, consult your dentist about various cosmetic dentistry solutions.
One of the most effective ways to improve the look of your small teeth in addition to any other imperfections is with porcelain veneers.
Porcelain veneers are thin covers that are installed directly onto the surface of your teeth. The veneers can be matched to your existing color and shape of your teeth, but the actual size can be altered so your smile will have teeth that are a more normal size. Because veneers are affixed to the front of your teeth, sufficient and strong enamel and teeth are necessary to support this restorative option.
If your teeth are a bit more frail, bonding may be a better solution. Bonding involves applying composite resin to the surface of the teeth, shaping it, and then hardening it. While it does cover your existing teeth, bonding can be applied in a way that makes your teeth appear larger in size, giving you a more normal smile.
If your smaller teeth stem from excessive gum tissue, a more involved treatment may be necessary to improve your smile. Gum contouring is an effective procedure that removes excess gum tissue using laser technology. Many people choose to undergo gum contouring before an application of veneers or dental bonding.
Patients with small teeth related to amelogenesis imperfecta should undergo a full consultation to determine if their teeth are strong enough for dental bonding or crowns. Many patients with this condition can benefit from wearing dentures, which will improve the look of their small teeth while protecting their brittle tooth enamel from further distress.
Living with small teeth is possible even though you may feel less inclined to smile. This guide will help you understand the causes and treatment options for unusually small teeth. Get in touch with a clinic that offers cosmetic dentistry services to learn more.