A recent trend has emerged on social media that has our dental team cringing. Several popular TikTok videos show influencersusing nail files to grind down their teeth.
During the video, filing down teeth looks simple. Seeing the after-effects could encourage some of our patients to give it a try.
Sadly, there aren’t any follow up videos that show the long-term effects of this trend. Could nail filing work to reshape your teeth? Technically, it might, but it could hurt you in the long run.
Filing teeth comes with serious risks that make this trend not worth trying. Here’s what everyone who follows social media needs to know about this dangerous trend.
How Does Social Media Influence Dental Trends?
Social media has made it possible to make a video go viral. TikTok and other social media platforms come with the ability for anyone to put their face into the public’s view.
Teenagers and young adults are especially susceptible to social media trends. Many young people look up to influencers. While most influencers want to help people, some will do anything to get the most views of their videos as possible.
This has led to people posting controversial and potentially dangerous content. Today, young adults are under tremendous pressure to look their best when a video they’ve made could be seen around the world.
Why Do My Teeth Have Ridges?
People are often surprised to find out that teeth are not meant to be perfectly smooth. You might even notice that your front teeth have ridges or bumps along the bottom edges.
These ridges are a regular part of your tooth anatomy. Dentists refer to these tiny bumps as mamelons. The bumps help the permanent teeth break through the gums when they emerge in childhood.
Some people find that the bumps wear down over time. They are often still noticeable well into adulthood. Leaving them alone is perfectly acceptable and may be preferable to prevent damage to your teeth.
What Are the Risks Involved With DIY Teeth Grinding?
Using a file on your teeth removes the top layer of enamel. This enamel is meant to protect the inner layers of your teeth from harm.
Filing your teeth at home makes it easy to remove too much enamel, which weakens your tooth. If enough enamel is removed, you could have issues with teeth sensitivity. Exposing the underlying dentin can make your teeth look yellower.
A tooth that has been filed down too much is at higher risk for tooth decay. There is also the serious possibility that you could break your tooth from filing too hard. People who participate in this trend may end up needing dental crowns or fillings to correct the nail file’s damage.
How Do Dentists Create Beautiful Smiles?
There are times when we find it essential to help someone reshape their smile. We use professional techniques that involve x-rays to make sure that we do not remove too much enamel.
The quest for a perfect smile could do more harm than good. You can do a lot at home to keep your smile healthy. Keep brushing and flossing your teeth each day.
If you have a concern about the shape of your teeth, your dentist is the one to turn to for help. Professional tooth shaping techniques are safer. We can give you a smile you want while preserving the strength of your teeth.