How often do you smile each day? When you’re confident in your smile, you could be breaking into a grin 40-50 times a day. Children, who have no qualms about their smile, can do so over 400 times a day. However, when you don’t feel confident in your teeth, you smile less.
If this sounds like you, rest assured that you can feel happy with your smile again. Cosmetic dentistry has changed the lives of millions of people by making them feel confident in their smiles and even improving their dental health. You can be as carefree and relaxed with your smile as a child. Keep reading to learn how cosmetic dentistry can improve your smile.
What Can Cosmetic Dentistry Do?
Cosmetic dentistry is a growing field within dentistry. Often, patients seeking cosmetic dentistry services aren’t doing so out of necessity or dental emergencies. They might feel insecure about a feature of their smile or face. For example, missing a few teeth usually won’t affect your overall health. But, it does affect the structure of your face and can lead to changes in your face’s muscles.
A cosmetic dentistry treatment such as dental implants can fill the space of the missing teeth to prevent changes in your facial appearance. Cosmetic dentistry makes it easier for patients to chew, speak, and smile. The benefits of having a smile you adore are immense.
5 Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments for an Enhanced Smile
The world of cosmetic dentistry includes many different treatments. Here, we’ll discuss the five most popular treatments and what they entail.
- Teeth Whitening – It’s normal for the teeth to change colour over time, especially if your lifestyle habits aren’t as healthy as they should be. Drinking tea, red wine, and coffee and eating sugary foods can cause staining on your teeth, as can smoking cigarettes. Having poor dental hygiene over the years can lead to discolouration and stains. Luckily, the results of teeth whitening are often impressive and leave the patient happy.
Teeth whitening is the most popular type of cosmetic dentistry. Although many people attempt to whiten their teeth from home, the most effective methods are only given by dental professionals. Your dentist will use bleach in a chemical process to transition the teeth back to white. All it takes is one appointment with your dentist that could run up to two hours in length. They will fill a custom-fitted mouthpiece with the whitening solution.
Remember — not all mouths are the same. Some people’s teeth don’t react well to bleaching, and some have severe stains. In these cases, your dentist will go a different route to find an effective and safe whitening method for you.
- Bonding and Veneers – Do you have spaces between your teeth? Do some of your teeth have chips and look misshapen? You could have sustained an injury to the mouth, or simply have grown up with a smile you were unhappy with. Having irregularly shaped teeth can cause insecurity and emotional stress. The treatment options for these teeth symptoms are bonding and veneers.
Bonding is one way of filling in cracks and chips in the teeth. It can also cover up stained teeth. Your dentist will create a bonding solution in the colour of your teeth, or a lighter shade. In one appointment, the dentist will paint the bonding solution onto the tooth’s surface. This method lasts for many years, but does require maintenance.
Veneers, on the other hand, last much longer than bonding. They consist of a porcelain or plastic shell that covers the teeth. It’s often used for patients with crooked, uneven, and chipped teeth.
To ensure the shell fits snuggly against your teeth, your dentist will take an impression of them. The teeth need to be buffed before installation of the veneers to ensure they adhere. A layer of dental cement is painted on the teeth, and then the veneers are placed on them. Then, a light beam is shined on the cement to help harden it. Sometimes, the entire process can take 2-3 appointments if the first impression of your teeth wasn’t accurate enough.
- Enamel Shaping – Plenty of people around the world have crooked or overlapping teeth. If orthodontic treatment, like braces, isn’t an option, you may want to consider enamel shaping. In this treatment, the dentist will shave down teeth that are sticking out or covering neighbouring teeth too much. They can also re-shape teeth that are irregularly shaped, like being too long or wide. Likewise, the dentist can also fill in the empty spaces or cracks in the teeth with bonding.
Enamel shaping and bonding are often complementary treatments to each other. This treatment shows immediate results and can usually get done in 1-2 treatments.
- Bridges and Crowns – If you have a tooth with severe decay or damage, a crown could be a promising cosmetic treatment. Crowns are sometimes called “caps” because they cover the tooth. Made from acrylic, porcelain, or resin, crowns are often secured to the tooth by being fused to metal. They don’t come off when biting or chewing. To create a custom-fitted crown, the dentist will make a mould of the tooth or teeth that are getting the crown/crowns. Some dental clinics can make the crown on the same day, but many will require a second appointment. Between the two dates, you’ll be provided with a temporary crown to cover the tooth. Wear and tear eventually takes a toll on the crown, but with proper care, it can last up to 15 years.
- Dental Implants – If you want a more permanent solution to missing teeth than dentures and bridges, implants are the way to go. Implants get screwed into the jawbone surgically and are only eligible for patients with enough bone density to support the implant. To know if you’re eligible, the dentist will give you an x-ray as well as a detailed exam. Once you’re approved for the implants, your dentist will surgically implant the titanium screws into the jawbone where the implant will adhere to. They’ll make impressions of your teeth and gums to create the crowns from. Then, the crowns will get adhered to the implants. This process happens over several appointments, sometimes not seeing completion for 4-6 months.
Is Cosmetic Dentistry Safe?
There are risks associated with every medical treatment, cosmetic or otherwise. By having a qualified and experienced dental team, you reduce those risks immensely. Before committing to any cosmetic dentistry treatments, do your research. Look at all your options for treatment and ensure your dental team has enough experience and knowledge to carry out the procedure safely.
The cosmetic dentistry team at Lambton Family Dental has the experience, expertise, and qualifications to provide exceptional cosmetic dental care. Whether you’re interested in teeth whitening or need to replace missing teeth, we can help restore your smile.
Send us a message or call the office to book your consultation: (519) 344-5747.