Many times when we think of dental work, our thoughts go to restorative procedures like fillings and crowns. Often we only think about going to the dentist to take care of a problem with decay and/or pain. But there is a whole branch of dentistry dedicated to aesthetics. It is called cosmetic dentistry.
Cosmetic dentistry can address problems with:
- Widely spaced teeth
- Stained or discolored teeth
- Worn, chipped or broken teeth
- Crooked or overlapping teeth
- Gummy smiles
- Mismatched crowns
- Old dental work
Bonding is one of the easiest and least expensive cosmetic dental procedures. Bonding can repair chipped or cracked teeth, close gaps between teeth, or replace silver amalgam fillings.
Veneers are bonded to the front of the teeth, changing their color, shape, size or length. Veneers are custom made and can be made of porcelain or resin composite. Veneers are more conservative than having a crown placed on a tooth, but they are a permanent procedure.
A crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” that is placed over a damaged or weak tooth to improve its strength, size, shape or appearance.
Teeth whitening is one of the most widely available cosmetic procedures. It includes toothpastes and rinses, over the counter gels, trays and strips, and whitening products available through a dentist. Tooth whitening is ideal for people who have healthy gums and teeth with minimal restorations. Teeth with yellow undertones respond best to teeth whitening products.
Composite restorations are commonly used in restorative procedures. Often people have old amalgam fillings replaced with white, composite fillings.
Dental implants are becoming commonplace as millions of Americans suffer tooth loss, mostly due to tooth decay, gum disease or injury. Implants replace the root of a missing tooth which provides a strong foundation for the attachment of artificial teeth.
Modern treatment options make cosmetic dental procedures and smile makeovers faster than ever. It is possible to have a new smile in just two or three visits. The length of a treatment plan will depend on your oral health and the results you seek.
Before beginning the cosmetic phase of treatment, it is important to resolve any oral health issues. It is important to have a healthy foundation to ensure your new smile lasts for a lifetime.
If having a bright and even smile is appealing to you, modern cosmetic treatments can make it easier than you think. A discussion with the dentist can answer any questions or concerns you may have, and give you a good idea of what’s possible for improving your smile.