Tooth Enamel Modification
Getting Rid of Calcification Spots - Bleaching Alternative
Many people suffer from tooth discoloration, specifically white and brown spots within the enamel that cannot be removed. These defects are usually a de-mineralization in the outermost layer of enamel.
Why does this happen? There are many causes including plaque build-up on teeth or a disruption during tooth development such as trauma.
In the past, dental treatments to eliminate these areas required significant removal of enamel and either the placement of white composite fillings or porcelain veneers.
Effective Proprietary Treatment Hybrid
In our practice a proprietary treatment we developed over 10 years ago is offered to our patients as a cost effective option. Principles of microabrasion are combined with a predetermined mixture of acid and laboratory pumice which is applied as a treatment paste.
Enamel modification is achieved by the application of the paste which safely and effectively polishes away the defects.
As can be seen in the adjacent before photo, our patient had significant spotting on her upper arch anterior (front) teeth.
She wanted a sensible, affordable and practical treatment to get rid of the mottled appearance that wouldn't respond to traditional whitening or laser based bleaching gels treatments (some products are known to make mottling more pronounced).
Overall, the procedure is easy, painless and cost effective. The enamel is left with a smooth, shiny and natural appearance.
The after photo demonstrates the effectiveness of this conservative treatment on 6 of the upper arch teeth structures.
The patient was very pleased with obtaining the cosmetic result she wanted without having to rely on porcelain veneer or composite resin bonding procedures.
Modifying Enamel Structures - Case by Case
Enamel modification is not for every patient. There are some defects that are deep within the enamel and cannot simply be removed by this technique.
In these cases we suggest more comprehensive dentistry such as bonding, veneers or crowns. Since each patient is unique a clinical exam is required by the treating dentist to determine the quality of the enamel and the best course of treatment.
Kristin Petulla, DDS
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