Cosmetic dentistry is dentistry that deals specifically with the appearance of one’s teeth. Many people do it to feel better about their overall appearance, thus improving self-confidence and self-image. However these treatments aren’t always just about cosmetic appearance. They can improve other oral problems as well.
The most common form of cosmetic dentistry is bleaching. This is a chemical process that whitens your teeth. It is popular with people whose teeth are discolored or stained.
You can either get your teeth bleached at your dentist’s office or do it at home while carefully following your dentist’s instructions and parameters. Your dentist will create a mouthpiece for you that will make sure that you use the right amount of whitening solution and that your teeth will be properly exposed to the solution. Bleaching your teeth at home will generally be a 2-4 week process. If you choose to get your teeth bleached at the dentist’s office, it’s likely to be a 45 minute session.
Bonding is another popular procedure. The dentist will fill in the holes in your teeth with a white substance that matches your tooth’s color. This bonding agent is often used to fill in cavities. It can close spaces between teeth that are too wide and this substance can cover the entirety of a tooth to change its shape or color. You’ll only need one session to have it applied, and the procedure is typically painless, but it will last for years. However, the substance can get chipped or stained. Bonded composite resins are a good thing to have applied to chipped and decayed teeth.
Crowns are caps that cover a tooth to restore its shape and appearance. These are also often used when a cavity is threatening the health of a tooth to protect it. It also strengthens the teeth. However, the process is time consuming and expensive, so it’s often used only when the situation absolutely requires it.
A less expensive alternative to crowns is covering your tooth with a thin veneer. Like with crowns, the dentist will make an impression of your tooth and use it to create a custom-made cover for it. But in the case of veneers, they are thin pieces of porcelain or plastic that will be bonded to your teeth to restore its shape and color. Though the dentist will need to buff down your teeth to make them smaller so the added layer of veneer doesn’t throw off your bite; the procedure it relatively painless and often no anesthesia is required. Veneers generally last longer than bonding and don’t discolor as much either.
There is also contouring, which corrects crooked, chipped, cracked or overlapping teeth. Bridges are essentially artificial replacement teeth and are often referred to as “fixed partial dentures” as they are bonded to other teeth or implants. Implants are the alternative to dentures and are a synthetic structure that replaces a tooth’s root.
Cosmetic procedures are a vital part of dentistry worth looking into!