The use of cosmetic dentistry has become very common in our society today. Many people visiting the dentist are looking for a way to enhance their smiles. This type of dentistry refers to any dental work that is done to enhance the appearance of the teeth or gums. The rise of the title “cosmetic dentists” has become very evident, with many dentists advertising their services in various media or websites. It is, however, important to note that the American Dental Association does not consider cosmetic dentistry to be an area of specialization in dentistry.
There are a number of procedures that can be performed by the dentist to improve the appearance of the teeth or smile. Ranging from subtle changes to extensive repairs, the procedures are used to fix teeth that are discolored, misshapen, chipped or missing. The dentists can reshape teeth, close gaps or spaces, alter the length of teeth, or restore teeth that are short or worn. The most common procedures include bonding, bleaching, veneers, contouring and reshaping. While the procedures may be considered cosmetic, in many cases, they help to improve oral conditions such as the bite. Having an overbite can hamper speech and in some cases, the bite affects ones ability to eat certain foods.
Bleaching is one of the most common dental procedures that involve using chemicals to whiten teeth. While some people use bleach to remove stains, others simply do it to get a better shade of white. A number of factors including coffee, tea, certain medications and smoking can cause teeth discoloration. It can also be hereditary, and in many cases is simply due to the aging process. While bleaching is often carried out at the dentist’s office, there are home treatments that can be carried out under the supervision of the dentist. The length of time it takes to complete the procedure will depend on the desired results.
Composite or Porcelain Fillings
Composite or porcelain fillings are an attractive, more natural looking option to the amalgam metal fillings of old. If you want teeth that look great and are mercury free, a posterior composite or porcelain restoration may be your treatment of choice.
Also know as facings, these can be customized from either porcelain or tooth-coloured filling material to cover teeth that are severely stained or discoloured.
Crowns are tailored to surround the whole tooth to cover heavily filled or unsightly teeth. Not only do crowns improve overall appearance, but they also strengthen the tooth.
Orthodontics can be used to move malpositioned teeth into the correct position, to close spaces between teeth and to improve mild crowding. In recent years much advancement have been made into the aesthetics of orthodontistry. Brackets that fit onto the teeth are now available in a tooth coloured material, making them less conspicuous.