First impressions are lasting and often determine how people relate to us from that point on. With that in mind, what happens when we refuse to smile or smile awkwardly because we’re afraid to show our teeth? It sends a message and that message is often misunderstood or ridiculed.
Today’s dental technology and treatment options offer multiple solutions to tackle this problem. It’s easy to get confused and overwhelmed as you try to sort through all the choices, though. So, here are some common questions about cosmetic dentistry and their answers to get you started in the right direction:
Questions About Cosmetic Dentistry
#1 – What exactly is cosmetic dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry deals with improving the appearance of your teeth, gums, mouth, and smile. Teeth whitening, veneers, fillings, crowns, inlays, onlays, and implants are common procedures used to reach that goal.
#2 – What conditions cause people to see a cosmetic dentist?
Here are the top reasons for consulting a cosmetic dentist:
These issues often create problems with eating and speaking, causing embarrassment and isolation for those dealing with them. The American Dental Association found in a 2015 survey that 33% of young people try not to smile due to conditions of the teeth and mouth. 23% of adults cut back on social activities due to embarrassment about their dental conditions.
#3 – Will people know I’ve had cosmetic treatments?
No! Cosmetic dentistry has improved a great deal over the years and the materials used can be perfectly matched to the surrounding teeth. Crowns, veneers, and bonding resins can’t be identified as anything other than natural, especially since the gloss on the surfaces is identical to natural teeth.
#4 – What is the difference between a crown and a veneer?
A veneer is more a cosmetic choice and covers the front of the tooth only while a crown covers an entire damaged or missing tooth. Porcelain veneers can be used to cover broken, cracked, or chipped teeth. They are especially useful on the front teeth. Veneers last longer, between 10 and 20 years in general, and are usually less expensive than crowns.
Crowns are usually more expensive than veneers but are often covered by dental insurance to some degree.
Source: Teeth Talk Girl
#5 – How does that differ from an implant?
Dental implants are a permanent solution to missing or badly damaged teeth. The materials used are very durable and are biocompatible with the human body. The titanium posts that hold one or more crowns are surgically inserted into the jaw where the missing teeth were previously.
The entire process, including insertion of the titanium posts, grafting if necessary, healing, and addition of the replacement teeth can take from 3 months to a year, depending on the patient/situation. The implants are permanent, though. They provide the same stability and reliability as natural, healthy teeth. However, this method of tooth replacement is more expensive compared to other dental options and not always covered by dental insurance.
There has arguably been no greater advancement in modern dentistry in 40 years than dental implants.
#6 – Can veneers or crowns stain?
Yes, but this is preventable by how you treat your teeth in general. The material used in veneers and crowns is highly resistant to becoming stained. In fact, they resist stains more than your natural teeth do. And that’s the problem. If you are eating and drinking food and drinks that are known to stain your teeth, your natural teeth can become stained. But the veneers and crowns will not and then they won’t match your teeth any longer. Plus, the porcelain used in crowns and veneers can be damaged by using abrasive toothpaste, which will make them more susceptible to staining.
So, you are in control of whether your veneers and crowns become stained. Ask your dental hygienist for more input on this so you can protect all of your teeth.
#7 – My teeth are crooked. Can cosmetic dentistry help me?
Yes, but the method depends on how badly your teeth are misaligned. Teeth that are only slightly crooked with no bite problems can be helped with veneers. Veneers will reshape your teeth without the need for braces. And that is a huge advantage of using veneers for crooked teeth!
If your teeth are severely crooked or the bite is misaligned, veneers aren’t the option. Discuss this with your dentist; they may want to straighten your teeth first.
#8 – Is there a way to fix the gap between my front teeth without getting braces?
Yes! Dental bonding can hide the gap and it’s quick and easy to do. A tooth-colored material, matching the color of your natural teeth, is applied to the front teeth on either side of the gap. It is buffed until the shininess of the material matches your own teeth and the gap disappears! It takes about 30 minutes and will need to be redone every 4 to 8 years.
Veneers can be used to close the gap, too. They are placed over the existing teeth on either side of the gap to erase the gap. This takes a few visits but only needs to be replaced every 15 years.
#9 – How do cosmetic treatments affect my oral health?
Your oral health will be improved with any cosmetic treatment. After all, your dentist must deal with any underlying problems with your gums and teeth as they prepare your mouth for veneers, crowns, or implants. And afterward, you will continue to carry out a solid daily routine to keep all of your teeth, your gums, and your mouth healthy. This includes routine checkups and good oral hygiene practices every day.
#10 – Does tooth whitening damage the enamel on my teeth?
Not if the tooth whitening process is done at your dentist’s office. Some of the home kits can cause problems if they aren’t used correctly.
Hopefully, this article has covered some of the questions you may have about cosmetic dentistry. But, if you still have any more questions, we’re here to help!
If you’re looking for a top cosmetic dentist in Drexel Hill, contact us here at Radomile Family Dental Care today! Our team can answer any questions you may have and help you achieve the beautiful smile you can show off with confidence.