Cosmetic dentistry is a definition used to describe a range of different dental treatments that are carried out with the primary intention of improving the appearance of the teeth. Despite esthetics being the main goal, many of the treatments also have functional benefits for the patient. Some treatments can be performed standalone in order to improve the aspects of your smile that you find most concerning. However, many patients feel that there are numerous things that they would like to change about their teeth and so opt to combine cosmetic dentistry treatments so that they can achieve a more significant smile transformation.
There are a range of different treatments that are considered to be forms of cosmetic dentistry.
There is no getting around the fact that a whiter smile is a more attractive smile. Unfortunately, over time our teeth become easily stained and discolored. This typically occurs due to the colorings in the foods and drinks we consume, with red wine, coffee, tea, and berries being particular culprits. Habits such as smoking also lead to dental discoloration.
Teeth whitening is the most popular cosmetic dental treatment in the world and is a simple and effective way to lift stains and lighten and brighten your smile. Over-the-counter whitening products may be able to make mediocre and temporary improvements to the color of your smile, but experts agree that only in-office whitening performed by a cosmetic dentistry professional can deliver consistent, fast and long-lasting results.
If you aren’t found to be a suitable candidate for teeth whitening, you may be recommended to try a treatment called porcelain veneers. These thin, shell-like coverings sit over the top of the natural tooth enamel, hiding any imperfections underneath it. This includes cracks and chips as well as staining and discoloration. Veneers are also recommended to add height or thickness to undersized teeth or to close small gaps between them.
The process to receive porcelain veneers is straightforward. Some local anesthetic is given as a little of the natural enamel of the affected teeth needs to be removed for the custom-designed veneer to be placed. Enamel can’t regenerate, so any teeth that have once had a veneer will always require a veneer to cover them.
Bonding is another effective way of transforming the appearance of your teeth. Bonding involves pasting a special tooth-colored resin over the affected teeth and molding it to cover imperfections and improve their overall look. Once your cosmetic dentist is happy with the way the resin has been placed, it is then hardened and permanently secured to your teeth using a special curing light.
Tooth loss is surprisingly common. Whilst there are numerous options for replacing them, dental implants are considered the most aesthetically attractive. This is because it is possible to replace missing teeth with a custom-designed prosthetics that look and feel just like regular teeth. The visible part of each dental implant is designed specifically for your mouth and smile, ensuring that it blends seamlessly with the rest of your teeth. No-one needs know that you have ever needed a tooth replacement solution.
It is very usual to have teeth that are crooked, twisted, overlapping or gapped, or to have teeth that are different heights and widths. You may also have issues with the way your teeth come together when you close your mouth. Unfortunately, teeth with misalignment or bite problems are often not all that attractive to look at. Fortunately, orthodontic treatments such as traditional orthodontic braces and Invisalign clear aligners can put your teeth into a healthier and more cosmetically desirable position.
If you are unhappy with the appearance of your teeth, there is undoubtedly at least one cosmetic dentistry treatment that can help restore your confidence in your smile. For more information on cosmetic dentistry or to schedule an appointment to discuss your smile, please contact our dental offices in Corpus Christi, TX today.