Dentistry is no longer just a case of filling and taking out teeth. Nowadays many people turn to cosmetic dentistry, or ‘aesthetic dentistry’, as a way of improving their appearance. They do this in the same way they might use cosmetic surgery or even a new hairstyle. The treatments can be used to straighten, lighten, reshape and repair teeth. Cosmetic treatments include veneers, crowns, bridges, tooth-coloured fillings, implants and tooth whitening.
The latest advancements in dental technology have allowed cosmetic dentists to utilize materials that are both durable and aesthetically pleasing. The amount of additional training cosmetic dentists undergo allows them to blend both art and science into smiles that are healthy and beautiful. Materials such as porcelain or composite materials are closely matched to resemble the look and feel of your original teeth, giving a natural appearance of your teeth and smile that enhance one’s oral appearance.
Cosmetic dentistry has also taken leaps in utilizing less invasive techniques that conserve as much natural tooth as possible. These practices combined with advancements in natural-looking, tooth-colored dental materials make today’s cosmetic dental treatments more durable and predictable than in years past. In addition to these advancements many cosmetic dentists are available to perform many procedures in-office that used to require referrals to other specialists. The need for patients to see multiple dental care providers and experience multiple trips has been replaced by more convenient and advanced procedures and has reduced recovery time.
Cosmetic Dental Procedures
A dental implant is a form of cosmetic dentistry used to replace missing teeth for a look and feel that is natural. Dental implants are long-term replacements that your cosmetic dentist or oral and maxillofacial surgeon surgically places in the jawbone. With the exception of children, dental implants can be a healthy solution for people of all ages and are a good alternative to dentures or partials.
Tooth bonding is the application of a tooth-colored resin material using adhesives and a high intensity curing light. Bonding is typically used for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of a discolored or chipped tooth, close spaces between teeth, to make teeth look longer or to change the shape or color of teeth. It is also used as an alternative to amalgam fillings, or to protect a portion of the tooth’s root that has been exposed when gums recede.
Dentures are used to replace missing teeth that can be taken out and put back into your mouth. There are generally two types of dentures available: complete dentures and partial dentures. Dentures are used so that patients who suffer from tooth loss don’t have to suffer the negative effects of not having teeth. They are free to eat and drink most foods and don’t suffer from the sagging facial appearance that occurs with missing teeth.
Invisalign is the most popular alternative to orthodontic appliances such as braces because they employ a clear tooth aligner that is invisible to the eye. Users are attracted to this product because it allows them to straighten their teeth while maintaining a professional appearance. The aligners fit comfortably over the teeth and gradually straighten them the same way braces do.
Tooth whitening is the most common cosmetic dentistry procedure because it can significantly improve the appearance of your teeth at much less cost and inconvenience than other techniques. There are various types of teeth whitening treatments available ranging from in-office bleaching to take-home kits that take a few weeks. Each method has its pros and cons and you can learn more about them here.
Braces are an orthodontic corrective appliance used most commonly to properly align teeth. Often times a cosmetic dentist may recommend braces before other cosmetic procedures because a misaligned mouth can lead to various dental health problems. A bad bite can make maintaining teeth more difficult and can lead to oral health problems that would have been much cheaper and easier to prevent than to fix.
Dental veneers are custom-made ultra-thin shells of tooth colored materials designed to cover the front surface of teeth to improve your appearance. They can remedy the look of teeth that are chipped, discolored, misaligned, uneven, worn down, or abnormally spaced. The result of a dental veneer treatment is teeth that are bright and beautifully aligned and look and feel completely natural.