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Help Correcting Overjet and Spaces Between My Teeth

I have multiple problems with my teeth. I have overjet, and some spaces between my teeth are about 1/8 inch wide. Four of my teeth are missing. Also, I have caps on my front center teeth that are yellow, old, and too big. The overjet makes it looks like I am poking out my lips. My top teeth completely overlap my bottom teeth when I close my mouth. If I bite down, my teeth dig into my gums. This is a lot of work that I know my regular dentist doesn’t usually do. He said he could do new caps and then refer me to an orthodontist. I do not feel good about how my crowns will look from my dentist. I prefer not to switch dentists, but is there another way around it if I need cosmetic work and braces?

Loraine –

We understand your concerns. When there are multiple issues with your teeth, if a dentist’s work is not good, it can still detract from your smile. Although braces may beautifully align your teeth, if your dental crowns (caps) do not look natural, you will be unhappy with your smile—and perhaps self-conscious about it.

Over Jet Treatment Options

The tip of dental forceps hold a porcelain veneer
Porcelain veneer

If you have overjet and want to correct it, a cosmetic dentist will recommend orthodontics before dental crowns or veneers.

  • Orthodontics – Braces can correct overjet and the spaces between your teeth.
  • Dental crowns – Repositioning your teeth takes priority. Afterward, a cosmetic dentist can replace your dental crowns with natural-looking ceramic crowns.
  • Porcelain veneers – If you did not have crowns already, after orthodontics, porcelain veneers could correct flaws in your teeth, including shape and discoloration that teeth whitening will not resolve.

We recommend looking for two or three accredited cosmetic dentists with whom you can have consultations. Make a list of questions that you want to ask during the consultations.

You will learn about your options for closing the spaces between your teeth, resolving the overjet, and what can enhance the shape and color of your teeth. Ask to see photos of cases like yours that each cosmetic dentist has completed for their patients. It will take some time, but it will help you find the best dentist to give you a smile you want.

Dr. Thomas Goebel, a Moline, Illinois dentist, sponsors this post.

Why Do I Have Cracks in My Teeth After Zoom Whitening?

Last month, I got Zoom whitening. My dentist asked me to wait two weeks for the color to settle before I started at-home whitening if I wanted it. Now that I am whitening my teeth and looking at them close up in the mirror, I see fine lines, like hairline cracks that I have never noticed. Is the bleaching gel too strong for my teeth and causing them to crack? Will these cracks get worse if I keep using the gel? Thank you. Krystiana from NM


Thank you for your question.

Does Zoom® Whitening Cause Hairline Cracks in Teeth?

In-office teeth whitening, similar to Zoom, being applied to teeth
In-office teeth whitening does not cause craze lines

Zoom® and other brands of in-office whitening do not cause hairline cracks in teeth. The bleaching gel breaks down stains but does not cause fractures. You may notice preexisting craze lines while examining your teeth more closely as you whiten them.

What Are Craze Lines in Teeth?

Craze lines are tiny, thin vertical cracks in teeth enamel. The lines occur with age and are most noticeable in middle-aged adults and seniors. The American Association of Endodontics states that most adult teeth have craze lines.

Factors that contribute to craze lines include:

  • Habitually chewing ice or hard objects
  • Misaligned teeth
  • Nail biting
  • Teeth clenching or grinding
  • Tooth trauma or injury

Facts About Craze Lines

What you should know about craze lines in teeth:

  • They are harmless and painless.
  • Most often, they affect the front teeth.
  • They are limited to tooth enamel and do not affect the layers beneath.

Can a Dentist Hide Craze Lines in Teeth?

An experienced cosmetic dentist can apply dental bonding to your teeth and hide craze lines. The bonding will perfectly match your tooth shade and translucence. Still, if you have prolonged sensitivity while whitening your teeth or feel any discomfort in the teeth with craze lines, speak with your dentist.

Dr. Thomas Goebel, a Moline, Illinois dentist, sponsors this post.