All About Cosmetic Dentistry
Cosmetic Dentistry creates positive changes to your teeth and smile. When you are confident in your smile, you feel more positive, and comfortable smiling. A cosmetic dentist addresses a patient’s concerns about appearance, but is also looking at overall health and function. Your general health, your mouth health, and how well your teeth function are important considerations.
Today’s cosmetic dentists perform whitening, tooth bonding, tooth-colored restorations and fillings, porcelain veneers, orthodontics, dental implants.
Tooth Whitening – Gums are protected with a shield. Next a whitening product is applied to the teeth using a tray that fits in your mouth like a mouthguard.
Laser Whitening – Gums are protected, a bleaching product is painted onto the teeth and a laser is shone on the teeth to activate the chemical. Light speeds up the reaction of the whitening product and the color change is achieved more quickly.
Tooth Bonding – A tooth-colored resin is adhered to the tooth and cured with a light to bond the material to the teeth. Used typically with discolored or chipped teeth.
Tooth-Colored Restorations – When rebuilding or restoring damaged teeth, dentists use materials that mimic natural teeth in color and shape.
Fillings – Teeth can be filled with porcelain, ceramic, metals or composite resin. Many dentists are moving away from metal fillings, specifically silver amalgam which contains mercury mixed with other metals. Composite resin may break down faster, however.
Porcelain Veneers – These are wafer-thin custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials designed to bond to the front teeth and disguise the natural teeth.
Orthodontics – This procedure addresses the prevention and correction of irregular teeth, (alignment or occlusion), using either metal or invisalign braces (a clear alternative to metal braces).
Dental Implants – These implants involve inserting a titanium post (like a tooth root) into the jawbone beneath the gum line to serve as an anchor for replacement teeth or a bridge. The implant doesn’t come loose like a denture can.
When choosing a cosmetic dentist, consider seeking someone accredited by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. Accredited ACCD dentists have additional education and extensive experience in their field.