Updated on September 22, 2016
Understand Cosmetic Dentistry
Healthy teeth are a sign of good health. Today everybody wants to move beyond healthy teeth and have good looking teeth. This is made possible by cosmetic dentistry. There are several options to choose from if individuals want their teeth to look beautiful.
There is no doubt that cosmetic dentistry is on the rise. Even a few reality shows have given us an inside view of how a dentist can transform almost anyone’s smile into the beautiful bright smile that most of us have always dreamed about.
There are several choices available for cosmetic dental work and your dentist will be able to help you determine which one will work the best in transforming your smile.
Teeth Whitening – Also called teeth bleaching can brighten and whiten your teeth from discoloration and / or staining. This procedure can be done in the dental office or at home. Not everyone’s teeth can be bleached, so it is very important to check with your dentist first.
Veneers – Veneers are a thin shell made out of porcelain or composite material. They are custom made and cemented to the front side of the tooth. A veneer can be used to treat dental conditions such as a slightly crooked tooth, discolored teeth, chipped teeth or even to cover spaces in between the teeth.
There are very many reasons for people to desire beautiful teeth and bright smiles. These results do not just happen. There are different types of cosmetic dentistry procedures that must be done.
Cosmetic Dentistry: Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening can be one of the simplest and least expensive ways to improve your smile. Teeth can be bleached with in-office products in your dentist’s office for about $500, or you can buy a mold and gels from your dentist to bleach your teeth at home. There are also whitening products available over-the-counter at retail stores for convenient at-home whitening: whitening toothpastes, paint-on gels, rinses, strips, and trays. These products together run about $3 – $50.
Cosmetic Dentistry: Dental Veneers
Dental veneers are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored porcelain or resin that cover the front surface of the teeth. After removing about a half-millimeter of enamel from the tooth surface, these thin shells are bonded (cemented) to the front of the teeth changing their color, shape, size, or length. Veneers are often called “Hollywood teeth.” Living up to that name, this process can cost up to $500-$1,300 per tooth.
Cosmetic Dentistry: Dental Bonding
In dental bonding, a tooth-colored putty-like resin, which is a durable plastic material, is applied to the tooth and hardened with an ultraviolet or laser light, bonding the material to the tooth. Your dentist then trims, shapes, and polishes it. Bonding can repair decayed, chipped, cracked, or misshapen teeth; it is also a good cosmetic alternative to, or replacement for, amalgam or silver fillings. Bonding takes about 30 to 60 minutes, and $100 to $400, per tooth.
Most people assume that cosmetic dentistry is all about looking good. This field is even associated with the rich and famous who have to ensure they are always looking good while in the spot light. Truth is every now and then, a person with dental problems will need cosmetic dentistry.
Cosmetic dentistry offers many advanced techniques to help patients. Here are a few of the ways that cosmetic dentists can give your smile a lift:
Replace missing teeth
Whether you have a few tooth gaps or a mouthful of missing teeth, a cosmetic dentist can restore your smile with natural looking tooth restorations. Dental implants, dental crowns, dental bridges, and dentures have all been used successfully to fill unsightly gaps in smiles.
Research shows that professional tooth whitening is safer and more effective than do-it-yourself remedies. It is perhaps the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure currently. Almost every cosmetic dentist offers a wide variety of in-office or take-home tooth whitening systems for a brightened, stain-free smile.
If you feel that your teeth are too pointy, worn down, or oddly shaped, a cosmetic dentist can use one of many cosmetic dentistry techniques to reshape your teeth for a more pleasing look. Porcelain veneers are often used because they can be shaped exactly as you and your cosmetic dentist decide.
Restore damaged teeth
Years of wear and tear on your teeth can be revealed through cracks, chips, or discoloration. Cosmetic dentists use procedures such as bonding or porcelain veneers to cover the damage and enhance the look of the tooth. For more severe damage such as badly decayed or broken teeth, a dental crown provides a natural-looking tooth restoration that offers important structure and support.