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Cosmetic Dentistry – All The Information You Need

Cosmetic Dentistry – All The Information You Need

While many people automatically think of dentistry as referring to the ‘scary’ fillings, drills, and extractions that may be required to fix and maintain dental hygiene, there is a whole other side to dentistry known as cosmetic dentistry. It refers to any dental procedure carried out in order to improve the appearance of the teeth or smile. These types of procedures may look to change the shade of your teeth, the alignment or position of your teeth, or even the shape and size of those chompers!

Your dental professional can provide a number of cosmetic dental care procedures to help you feel more comfortable and confident in the appearance of your smile.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth can become discoloured over time because of a number of reasons, but it can leave our self-confidence feeling drained. In addition, we have social media bombarding us with images of celebrities and influencers who have whiter than white teeth. As such, teeth whitening treatments have become an incredibly popular treatment among patients. In fact, it is one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures in modern dentistry.

What causes teeth discoloration?

  • Foods and beverages: Coffee, tea, red wine, and dark-colored fruits and vegetables can stain teeth over time.
  • Tobacco use: Smoking and chewing tobacco stain teeth and contribute to yellowing.
  • Aging: Tooth enamel naturally thins with age, allowing the underlying dentin, which is a darker yellow color, to show through.
  • Medications: Certain medications, such as tetracycline antibiotics, can cause tooth discoloration.
  • Trauma: Injuries to the teeth can damage the enamel and lead to discoloration.

Types of teeth whitening treatments:

1. Professional teeth whitening:

  • Performed in a dentist’s office, this method uses concentrated bleaching solutions and specialized techniques to achieve faster and more dramatic results.
  • Options include in-office whitening with powerful gels and lights, customized whitening trays for at-home use, and laser whitening for enhanced effectiveness.

2. Over-the-counter teeth whitening:

  • Readily available in stores and pharmacies, these products offer varying levels of whitening power.
  • Options include whitening toothpaste, mouthwashes, gels, strips, and trays.
  • While convenient and less expensive, results are often slower and less noticeable than professional treatments.

Factors to consider for whitening your teeth:

  • Sensitivity: Whitening products can cause tooth sensitivity, especially with sensitive teeth or overuse.
  • Pre-existing dental issues: Consult your dentist if you have any dental problems like cavities or gum disease before starting any whitening treatment.
  • Desired results: Consider the level of whitening you want and discuss the appropriate treatment options with your dentist.

Benefits of teeth whitening:

  • Boosts confidence and self-esteem: A brighter smile can enhance your confidence and make you feel more attractive.
  • Improves smile aesthetics: Whitening can remove stains and discoloration, leaving you with a more youthful and radiant smile.
  • Encourage better oral hygiene: The whitening process might inspire you to improve your dental care and uphold better oral hygiene practices.

Maintain your whiter smile:

  • Brush and floss regularly.
  • Limit staining foods and beverages.
  • Avoid smoking and tobacco use.
  • Get a touch-up whitening session every few months.
  • schedule routine dental checkups and cleanings with your dentist.

Zoom! Teeth Whitening

Dentists use Zoom! Teeth Whitening is a quick and effective way to whiten your teeth in just one appointment. They use either Zoom! Opt for a laser or Mega White system for safe and controlled teeth whitening. Zoom teeth whitening can lighten your teeth by 8-15 shades in just one appointment, giving you the brilliant white smile you’ve always dreamt of.

How does Zoom! work?

  1. Preparation: Your dentist will conduct a consultation to assess your suitability for Zoom! and address any concerns. They’ll also protect your gums and lips with a barrier.
  2. Gel application: A professional-grade hydrogen peroxide gel is applied to the surfaces of your teeth.
  3. Light activation: A special light is used to activate the whitening gel, accelerating its effects and achieving deeper whitening.
  4. Multiple applications: The gel is applied and activated in several 15-minute cycles, allowing for gradual and controlled whitening.
  5. **Results and ** After the final cycle, the gel is removed, and your teeth are rinsed. You’ll be amazed at the instantly whiter, brighter smile!

The Benefits of Zoom! Teeth whitening:

  • Fast and effective: Achieve stunning results in just one visit, ideal for busy schedules or special occasions.
  • Safety and control: Performed by a dental professional, ensuring proper application and monitoring of the whitening process.
  • Dramatic results: Zoom! can whiten teeth by up to 8 shades, providing a significant improvement in smile aesthetics.
  • Long-lasting effects: With proper care, your whiter smile can last for years.

Factors to consider before choosing Zoom:

  • Sensitivity: While uncommon, some individuals may experience temporary tooth sensitivity after treatment.
  • Cost: Compared to over-the-counter whitening options, Zoom! is a more expensive option.
  • Pre-existing dental conditions: Consult your dentist if you have any dental issues like cavities or gum disease before considering Zoom!

Maintain your whiter smile after Zoom:

  • Follow your dentist’s post-treatment instructions, including avoiding staining foods and beverages.
  • Maintain good oral hygiene practices, including brushing and flossing regularly.
  • Consider touch-up treatments every few months to maintain your desired level of brightness.
  • Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings for optimal oral health.

Dental Veneers

If you want to take the appearance of your smile one step further, you may consider getting dental veneers. Dental veneers are thin shells of porcelain or composite which is bonded to the surface of the tooth to alter the shape, length, size or colour of your teeth.

Overall, dental veneers are a positive investment for your teeth, because:

  • The veneers are relatively stain-resistant, depending on which material you choose;
  • The procedure only takes two visits; and
  • You are left with teeth that have a beautiful appearance & sturdy nature.

Types of dental veneers:

  • Porcelain veneers: Known for their exceptional durability and natural appearance, but often more expensive.
  • Composite resin veneers: A more affordable option, but may require replacement more frequently.

Procedures for getting dental veneers:

  • Consultation and planning: Your dentist will assess your suitability for veneers and discuss your desired outcome.
  • Preparation: The dentist will slightly remove tooth enamel to accommodate the veneers.
  • Impression taking: A precise mold of your teeth is made to ensure a custom fit for your veneers.
  • Veneer fabrication: Your veneers are crafted in a dental laboratory according to the mold and your chosen material.
  • Bonding: The veneers are permanently bonded to your teeth using a special dental cement.

Benefits of choosing dental veneers:

  • Long-lasting results: With proper care, veneers can last for 10-15 years.
  • Natural-looking appearance: Veneers are designed to blend seamlessly with your natural teeth.
  • Resistant to staining: Porcelain veneers are highly resistant to staining, unlike natural teeth.
  • Improved self-confidence: A brighter, more attractive smile can boost your self-confidence and social interactions.

Factors to consider before getting veneers:

  • Cost: Veneers are a significant investment, and the cost can vary depending on the material and number of teeth involved.
  • Tooth enamel removal: The preparation process requires removing a small amount of tooth enamel, which is irreversible.
  • Sensitivity: Some patients may experience temporary sensitivity after the procedure.

Maintain your veneers:

  • Brush and floss regularly.
  • Avoid chewing on hard objects.
  • Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings.

Crowns

Dental crowns made from porcelain are often the best cosmetic and functional choice for patients who have a chipped, cracked, crowded, gapped or oddly-shaped smile. Crowns are designed as a cap to cover a damaged or oddly-shaped tooth, giving the tooth an entirely natural look. To create a crown, experienced dentists will take an impression of any teeth requiring a crown. These impressions are then sent off to a lab for the crown to be created.

1-2 weeks after your impression is taken, you will be fitted with a temporary crown made from acrylic to mimic the appearance of the real tooth. Then, once the proper crown is ready, your dentist will fit your new crown on your tooth or teeth.

Reasons for getting a crown:

  • Severely damaged or decayed teeth: Crowns can protect and strengthen weakened teeth, preventing further damage and potential loss.
  • Fractured or broken teeth: Crowns restore the tooth’s structure and provide stability.
  • Large fillings: When a tooth requires extensive fillings, a crown can offer additional support and protection.
  • Discolored or misshapen teeth: Crowns can mask imperfections and create a more aesthetically pleasing smile.
  • Dental implants: Crowns are used to complete the restoration process for dental implants, creating a natural-looking and functional tooth.

Types of dental crowns:

  • Metal crowns: Strong and durable, but not as aesthetically pleasing as other options.
  • Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crowns: Offer a good balance of strength and aesthetics.
  • All-ceramic crowns: Most natural-looking, but may not be as strong as metal or PFM crowns.
  • Zirconia crowns: Highly durable and aesthetically pleasing, offering a good alternative to PFM crowns.

Procedure for getting a crown:

  1. Consultation and planning: Your dentist will assess your needs and determine if a crown is the right solution.
  2. Preparation: The tooth is slightly reshaped to accommodate the crown.
  3. Impression taking: A mold of your teeth is made to create a custom-made crown.
  4. Temporary crown: A temporary crown is placed while your permanent crown is being fabricated.
  5. Crown placement: The permanent crown is bonded to your tooth using a special dental cement.

Benefits of choosing dental crowns:

  • Long-lasting results: Crowns can last for 10-15 years with proper care.
  • Restore function and appearance: Crowns can restore a tooth’s ability to chew properly and improve its aesthetics.
  • Protect weakened teeth: Crowns provide a strong and durable covering for damaged teeth, preventing further problems.
  • Improved self-confidence: A healthy and beautiful smile can enhance your confidence and social interactions.

Factors to consider before getting a crown:

  • Cost: Crowns can be expensive, depending on the material chosen and the complexity of the procedure.
  • Tooth sensitivity: You may experience temporary sensitivity after the procedure.
  • Crown replacement: Crowns may need to be replaced over time due to wear and tear.

Maintain your crown:

  • Brush and floss regularly.
  • Avoid chewing on hard objects.
  • Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings.

Dental Implants

Whether you have one tooth, a few teeth or a full arch of teeth missing, you can get dental implants to fill the gaps in your smile and restore our confidence. Dental implants are surgically inserted into the jawbone to mimic the appearance of real teeth.

The Procedure

If you choose to get dental implants, you will undergo the procedure in stages, including:

  • Removal of damaged teeth
  • Preparation of the jawbone, if required
  • Placement of the dental implant, leaving time for the bone to grow and heal in the jaw around it
  • Placement of abutment
  • And finally, the placement of your new artificial tooth or teeth.

 

 

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