is teeth filing bad

Teeth-Filing: The Dangerous New TikTok Trend

Quarantine has been hard on all of us, and it’s left some people with a bit too much time on their hands. Along with making sourdough bread, some folks have resorted to shaving and filing their own teeth to get the perfect smile. But the resulting symmetrical smile brings a load of dental health issues with it, resulting in unintended consequences that could last a lifetime.

This dangerous new TikTok trend can lead to serious dental problems later on, despite leaving you with a straighter smile. It can result in enamel erosion which increases tooth sensitivity. Veneers are a much better option for straightening your teeth that also protects you from the pitfalls of DIY dentistry.

Why are TikTokers filing their teeth?

It’s completely understandable to want straighter teeth, but “influencers” on TikTok are taking it to another level. Rather than seeing their dentist, they’re using nail files to grind their way to a more perfect smile. These experiments in at-home cosmetic dentistry have had seemingly positive short-term results. Unfortunately, the long-term problems far outweigh the benefits.

16-year old Aislin Rendulic is an unlucky example of how DIY dentistry can go wrong. Rendulic always felt insecure about her crooked teeth, so she decided to take matters into her own hands. But she ended up filing it down too much, resulting in increased sensitivity from nerve exposure. Now she and other participants in the teeth filing trend are trying to sound the alarm.

Teeth Filing and Sensitivity

Sensitive teeth are the result of enamel erosion. This can result in pain when eating or drinking things that are too hot or too cold.

Enamel is the outer shell of your tooth. It protects your teeth from the regular wear and tear of:

  • Biting
  • Chewing 
  • Grinding

The inner parts of your teeth (including nerves in your tooth) become exposed without it. These parts of your teeth, such as dentin, are much more sensitive and need the enamel’s protection to prevent sensitivity.

Preventing Teeth Sensitivity

Fortunately, sensitivity is preventable. You can simply start by not filing them down with a metal nail file. For extra protection, follow a good oral health regimen, including:

  • Brushing twice a day 
  • Flossing at least once a day 
  • Regular dental appointments

You can also protect your enamel by switching to a soft-bristled toothbrush and avoiding acidic foods and drinks.

Veneers in Knoxville, TN: The Better Alternative for Straight Teeth


Veneers are cosmetic coverings cemented over your natural teeth to improve their appearance and functionality. These thin shells can be made of different materials, but they can all greatly improve your confidence when showing off your pearly whites. 

You will need to have some of your enamel shaved off for veneers to fit. The difference here is that it will be done by dental professionals in our office. This drastically reduces your risk of sensitivity or other dental health problems that could occur otherwise. 

Veneers aren’t just a better alternative to DIY dentistry. They’re also a great alternative to braces. Traditional braces can take years to take effect and require periodic tightening that can hurt your mouth. With veneers, you can have a straighter smile without the hassle in as few as two office visits!

The new teeth shaving TikTok trend can have serious consequences for your teeth. It involves removing enamel from the outer surface, which can result in increased sensitivity. You can prevent sensitivity by maintaining good oral hygiene and not filing your own teeth. Consider getting veneers instead for a straighter smile.

Want to learn more about getting straighter teeth? Contact us today to learn more about veneers!


Captains Way Dentistry has two locations in Knoxville to better serve you. You can call Captains Way West at (865) 691-1121 or you can schedule an appointment online. To make an appointment with Captains Way East, call (865) 544-1711 or make an appointment online.

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