Cosmetic Dentistry

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					   Cosmetic Dentistry

1. What is cosmetic dentistry? Cosmetic dentistry is simply this – taking steps to
   help your smile look its best. Here are the most common procedures available
   in cosmetic dentistry today:

      a. Tooth whitening - The most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure in the
         world today is tooth bleaching. Most everyone is a candidate regardless
         of age and it can be done at home over a couple of weeks or in the
         office in one to two hours.

      b. Tooth bonding and contouring – This can dramatically enhance a smile in
         a conservative way. If you have small chips, gaps or uneven teeth, the
         teeth can be slightly reshaped and tooth-colored bonding material can be
         applied to your teeth. No numbing is usually required for this procedure,
         and it can be done in one appointment.

      c. Braces – This is also a relatively conservative approach to cosmetic
         dentistry, but the treatment time involves months or years. Invisalign
         (clear) braces have become a mainstream way to treat most cases, but
         sometimes traditional bands and brackets are required. Many adults are
         choosing braces for smile enhancement these days – it’s not just for
         teenagers anymore!

      d. Gingival contouring – If your gum tissue has become overgrown or
         uneven, talk to your dentist about this procedure. People with high smile
         lines, uneven gums, and otherwise beautiful teeth should consider gum
         contouring, otherwise known as periodontal plastic surgery.

      e. Veneers – When most people talk about “cosmetic dentistry” they are
         talking about porcelain veneers. Veneers are thin shells of porcelain that
         are bonded to the front of teeth. They are used to correct chips,
         spaces, and teeth that may be resistant to bleaching. Depending on
         your situation, your teeth may need to be prepped for the best results.
         Lumineers, Vivaneers or Durathin veneers are a type of veneer that is
         remarkable. They are contact-lens thin - so thin that in many situations,
         they can be done without prepping the teeth. Veneers can enhance a
         single tooth or can be used to complete a total smile makeover.
         Although most Hollywood stars have perfect smiles thanks to porcelain
         veneers, they are not just for Hollywood anymore. Many adults in
         mainstream America choose to get veneers for the dramatic results that
         can be realized in just two appointments.
      f.   Crowns – The same results as veneers are achieved, but crowns are
           chosen when there is more of a breakdown of the teeth due to decay or
           wear. All-porcelain crowns tend to be more cosmetic in nature than
           porcelain fused-to-metal crowns, so be sure to discuss your type of
           crown with your dentist.

2. How important is your smile? Smiles are usually the first thing we notice about
   each other. Smiles can tell us a lot about someone. Smiles can show health,
   happiness and confidence or sadness and embarrassment if you are trying to
   hide your teeth. People with healthy, exuberant smiles tend to be more
   successful in their careers and have a higher earning potential. If you are not
   feeling confident about your smile, it can hold you back from relationships and
   opportunities. It’s not all about the teeth – it’s about how you feel about your
   teeth. If you are feeling self-conscious about your teeth, I urge you to talk to
   your dentist. There are so many options available today to enhance your smile
   that may not have been available to you even just a few short years ago.

3. Who is a good candidate for cosmetic dentistry? Most everyone can benefit
   from cosmetic dentistry procedures. Which type of cosmetic dentistry is best
   for you is best decided by you and your dentist. The condition of your teeth
   (decay, presence of gum disease, tooth wear and tear, and spacing) and also
   your desires will help determine which route to take. Cosmetic dentistry always
   looks better on a healthy smile, so you should start with a routine check-up
   and teeth cleaning. Be sure to tell your dentist you want a cosmetic dentistry
   consultation. Dentists know that most everyone’s smile can be enhanced with
   cosmetic dentistry, but they want to talk about your options when you are
   ready to do so. Helping patients achieve a smile they can be proud of is what
   dentists love most about their job.

4. Is cosmetic dentistry worth the time and the cost? Can you really put a price
   on confidence and life opportunities? Patients don’t regret improving their smile.
   They only regret that they waited so long to do it.

5. How long will my new smile last? Whitening should be touched up every few
   months. Bonding should be touched up every few years due to wear and
   staining. Results achieved from braces last as long as you are wearing
   retainers. Porcelain veneers and crowns are meant to last a lifetime. It is
   important that you see your dentist regularly to prevent decay and damage to
   your new restorations, especially if you are prone to decay or if you tend to
   grind your teeth.

6. How quickly will I be able to complete my cosmetic dentistry treatment? That
   depends on which route you take. Whitening will take anywhere from one hour
to two weeks. Bonding will take one appointment. Porcelain veneers and
crowns will take at a minimum two appointments. Braces do take some time,
but keep in mind that the results can be dramatic and last a lifetime.