Dental II students carve wax teeth Scale models made to help understand tooth form

Inspecting his tooth model for imperfections, sophomore Fabian Kalandos checks to ensure the tooth edges are properly curved. Students had time to check over their teeth to ensure that they were happy with the result. "I spent a fair amount of time making sure my tooth looked good," Kalandos said. "It's nice to look back on the final result and see how much it improved since the start." Photo credit: Kamiran Hinton

Following learning about the dentitions and tooth morphology, students in Dental II are creating 3D tooth sculptures that model a tooth to scale.

“We recently finished a test on the last two chapters which involve learning about the structure of teeth,” sophomore Fabian Kalandos said. “That better understanding of how teeth are structured now lets us make accurate teeth models.”

The specific tooth which a student had to carve was assigned randomly. Two weeks were given to finish the carving.

“We started out with large blocks of wax and then carved them to the general dimensions of the tooth,” Kalandos said. “After that we cut out the shape of the tooth and added details at the end.”

The tooth project serves as part of the students’ semester exam. At the end, students will be graded on the quality and accuracy of their teeth.

“The project has greatly helped with my understanding of how teeth are shaped and sit in the mouth,” sophomore Matthew Rosenbaum said. “Having to form a complex shape from a block of wax has been challenging but fun.

At the end of the project on exam day, students will write a reflection regarding the most difficult and enjoyable parts of the tooth carving.

“Overall, this project has been really relaxing and enjoyable,” Rosenbaum said. “It’s a good change of pace from normal school and I like seeing my tooth develop over time.”