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Cosmetic dentistry is a special part of the medical field that allows patients to get the dental results they want, not just need. It may be part of and done at the same time as essential treatment such as fillings, crowns or snap-on dentures, or it may also be an entirely elective procedure that is being done for cosmetic reasons only. Either way, the goal of cosmetic dentistry is to enhance the look of your teeth. So, who in particular can benefit from cosmetic dentistry? The answer is anyone who wants to look better and feel more confident.
Cosmetic dentistry can boost the self-esteem of anyone who has long disliked their teeth. Someone who has lost a tooth can gain the confidence to smile again after having it replaced, possibly with a bridge, partial denture or even a dental implant. A change in appearance can even give you the feeling like you’ve taken out a second lease on life. Here are a few examples of cosmetic dentistry and how they help people.
Discoloured Teeth: Professional Whitening
This is one of the simplest and most affordable procedures one can get in the office. Over time, stains from drinks like coffee and wine can discolour your teeth and make them less bright and attractive. More importantly, the overall colour of a tooth is strongly affected by the colour of the dentin underneath the enamel. Changes in the dentin, enamel wear, and other factors cause our teeth to darken even if the teeth surfaces are void of any stains. This subtle change can discourage a person from smiling or posing for selfies, and I have even had patients tell me that their discoloured teeth were severe enough that they truly felt self-conscious and avoided social interactions for fear of being judged on their teeth.
Professional whitening brings out a person’s true beauty, partly by initially polishing off the surface stains and more importantly by lightning the dentin layer under the enamel.. A bright, white smile makes it easy to smile often and feel confident to approach people. It can be the missing link someone needs to regain their confidence.
Gaps and Chips: Veneers & Dental Bonding
When stains aren’t your only issue, it can even feel more daunting to find a solution. For patients with large gaps in their teeth or chips, no amount of whitening will resolve the imperfections that are related to the mere shape and layout of their teeth.
Porcelain veneers and dental bonding can resolve these problems. Dental bonding can add tooth-colored resin (filling material) to parts of your mouth that need coverage. It’s great for concealing minor gaps and smoothing out small chips in teeth. Veneers are suited to resolve larger gaps and significant tooth shape issues. They can also become a new tooth coating for teeth that are too discoloured for professional whitening to make a significant impact on.
For Missing Teeth: Dental Implants
When we lose teeth it can be traumatic. I know….although I am a dentist I am paying the price for not taking the best care of my teeth in my youth and young adult years and have lost teeth of my own. However, we do have some very good and excellent methods of replacing teeth today that were not as readily available/affordable 30+ years ago. Dental implants are artificial roots that are placed within the bone replacing the missing teeth. The “marriage” of implant and cosmetic dentistry with careful surgical and prosthetic techniques can often bring back natural-feeling and looking teeth with dental implants within 4-6 months, and sometimes much sooner.
It first involves placing a new synthetic root into the gums and jaw. The rate at which this root fuses with the jaw to become a solid anchor for a new tooth varies from patient to patient but once the root is secure the dentist can affix prosthetic tooth. These implants can meet diverse tooth replacement needs. Sometimes, a person just needs one tooth to fill in a gap. Other times, they may need a bridge for a set of teeth. When someone has lost all their teeth, the dentist can use a set of implants to support two full sets of permanent dentures (removable) or a full arch of permanent, non-removable teeth.
Keeping a root-like structure in the jaw isn’t just important for supporting prosthetic teeth. It’s also a vital component to maintain jaw bone density, volume and the original shape of your face. So in the end, dental implants are doing double-duty for your outward appearance.
Can Cosmetic Dentistry Be Right for You?
Looking to fix your smile? Find out how you can benefit from cosmetic surgery – contact us at (604) 434-0248 today!