Interproximal reduction is the process of shaving down the sides of your front teeth to create a modest amount of space to achieve either a reduction in the "overbite" (distance between the upper and lower front teeth) or to create some space to correct crowding.
Some of the potential disadvantages of interproximal reduction include:
- only a modest amount of reduction in "overbite"
- mild tooth sensitivity due to enamel being reduced in those areas, the dental nerve in the tooth may experience some irritation which presents as sensitivity to hot and cold. This usually resolves after a few days as the nerve recovers.
- The sides of the tooth that have been shaved will appear rougher under the microscope. This, however, does not lead to any long term implications. Research shows that interproximal reduction does not lead to increase risk of tooth decay due to the increased roughness of the tooth.
- change in the shape of the tooth to be more rectangular. This may or may not be a disadvantage as sometimes interproximal reduction is done to change the shape of the tooth to minimise the appearance of black triangles at the gum level. However if you do not like your teeth to be too rectangular and uniform in shape, this may not be something you desire. It is best to discuss this with your dentist and discuss your other options of reducing your "overbite" (front teeth being more in front than the lower teeth).
Hope this help and all the very best.
Dr Priscilla Lu