Every single day, we see how dentistry improves our patients’ lives, whether it’s treating gum disease, alleviating a painful toothache, or providing dental implants to replace teeth that are missing. On the surface, cosmetic dentistry might not seem to have the same kind of impact on people’s lives, but in our experience, these procedures are often transformative for our patients.
Many people are embarrassed by their teeth for years, if not their whole lives. When it's time to get their picture taken, they always have a tight-lipped smile, and when they laugh, they cover their teeth or look away. They may even avoid looking at themselves in the mirror. One of the best rewards a dentist can get is seeing these same patients leave our office proudly smiling, perhaps for the first time ever.
Here are some of the ways cosmetic dentistry can help enhance your smile and boost your self-confidence.
It Can Make You Look More Youthful
The enamel on the teeth thins as we get older, making them appear more yellow than white. If you have a habit of starting your day with a cup or two of coffee and ending it with a glass of red wine with your dinner, this yellowing process can be accelerated. Teeth whitening is an easy and inexpensive way to take years off of your appearance.
An in-office whitening procedure is the gold standard for teeth whitening. During this process, we apply a powerful bleaching agent to your teeth and then enhance its action with a specialized light. Your teeth will be noticeably brighter, all in under an hour. An at-home whitening kit is an effective alternative to in-office whitening if your discoloration is minor. Take-home whitening is more powerful than store-bought remedies, and it usually takes less than two weeks to produce results.
Sometimes, just one or two teeth are stained or discolored. In these cases, microabrasion, cosmetic bonding, or even dental veneers can be used. If the discoloration originates from inside the tooth, you may need a procedure called intrinsic whitening.
It Can Reshape Your Teeth
While stains are the most common cosmetic complaint patients have, the shape and size of the teeth is a close runner-up. Some patients believe their teeth are too small, whereas others think they are too big. You might worry your teeth are too uneven in size, while someone else may fret about theirs being too flat and uniform looking due to teeth grinding. Chips and gaps are another common cause for seeking cosmetic dentistry.
Your needs and objectives will dictate the procedure we use to reshape your teeth. Teeth that are long can be shaved down or made to look smaller with gum grafting, and teeth that are excessively short can be bonded or lengthened with a veneer. Closing gaps and correcting chipped teeth can also be achieved with composite bonding and veneers.
It Can Give Your Smile a Complete Makeover
Some patients are dissatisfied with every aspect of their smiles. Dental veneers might be the best option in these situations. Veneers are thin porcelain shells that are bonded directly to your teeth to cover over imperfections. They are used to fix minor misalignments, gaps, discoloration, and tooth shape, which is why they’re an excellent choice for patients who have a number of different complaints about their teeth.