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  3. What Is Cosmetic Dentistry?: Procedures, And Benefits

What Is a Cosmetic Dentist?

If you are unhappy with the look of your teeth, cosmetic dentistry can help. This method of oral care focuses on improving the appearance of your mouth, teeth, gums, and overall smile. Common procedures include teeth whitening, veneers, fillings, and implants.

Cosmetic Dentistry has seen an enormous growth in the past decade. More and more people are opting to have dental work done on themselves, and not necessarily just their smile. This is especially true for the aging population as they age. The younger generations, however, are also starting to see the advantages of cosmetic dentistry.

What Does a Cosmetic Dentist Do?

Cosmetic dentists provide dental care for patients seeking to improve their appearance by altering their facial features. While some dental professionals may be familiar with the term “cosmetic dentistry,” many people aren’t. This fact is important because not everyone should be seeking this type of care.

Common procedures and treatment for restorative dental treatments:

  • dental crowns
  • dental bridges
  • dental bonding
  • dental implants
  • inlays and onlays, and
  • dentures

Education and Training

Many cosmetic dentists first begin their careers by receiving training at other dental schools. Dentistry students undergo extensive training for four years and require a bachelor’s degree to enroll.

Reasons to See a Cosmetic Dentist

There are many reasons you might see a cosmetic dentist, including: 

  • Tooth decay
  • Damage (cracks, chips, etc.) 
  • Crooked teeth
  • Misshapen teeth
  • Discoloration
  • Missing teeth

It is important to make sure that you choose a dentist that is qualified for the specific procedure you want, especially if it is a complicated one. If you don’t know what you want, you may end up with a less-than-stellar result.

You’re probably thinking, “Okay, great, how do I find a dentist that does cosmetic procedures?” The easiest way to do that is to go to Google and type in “dentist”, followed by the word “cosmetic”.

Common Cosmetic Dental Procedures and Their Benefits

Cosmetic dental procedures are commonly performed by dentists to enhance the appearance of your teeth. These procedures can be performed in a dentist’s office or at a dental laboratory, depending on your particular situation. If you are considering cosmetic dental procedures, it is important to understand what these procedures can do for you.

Common procedures and treatment includes:

Tooth Bleaching

The purpose of tooth bleaching is to lighten the color of your teeth. This is most often done for cosmetic purposes, but it can also be done to improve the appearance of a stained or discolored tooth. Tooth whitening is available in a number of different forms, including in-office treatments, at-home treatments and over-the-counter products.

Dental Bonding

When we say “dental bonding”, what do you think of? Perhaps you see a small mirror, some adhesive and a tooth that needs to be bonded back together. In reality, dental bonding is a lot more than just that. It is an exciting process which involves the use of composite resins (plastic-like materials) to fill gaps in teeth or repair existing cracks in teeth.

Dental Veneers

A veneer is a thin layer of material applied to the outside of your tooth. It can be made from porcelain, ceramic or composite resin, and it will change the appearance of your teeth. Veneers are very strong and durable, so they can last for years without chipping or breaking. They also provide a natural-looking solution to your problem area.

Invisalign Braces

Invisalign braces are designed to give you the perfect smile. They are removable and comfortable, yet they will make you look like a million dollars! Invisalign braces are an alternative to traditional metal or ceramic braces, which can be visible for months on end. Invisalign braces work by shifting your teeth into position with a series of clear plastic trays that you wear over your teeth.

Gummy Smile Treatment

A gummy smile is a result of the unevenness of your teeth. It can be caused by tooth decay, gum disease, trauma to the teeth, and even orthodontic treatment. It is also a common condition that most patients seek treatment for. It is not a bad condition, but it can cause embarrassment and concern. 

3D Smile Designing (Digital smile desgning)

3D Smile Designing is the first comprehensive using software and technology for creating beautiful, accurate 3D smiles. It can be used to create new smiles or edit existing smiles. It also allows users to view their teeth from every angle imaginable.

Questions to Ask Your Cosmetic Dentist

How long have they been practicing?

Cosmetic dentistry is the study and practice of improving the aesthetic appearance of a person’s teeth. In order to become an excellent cosmetic dentist, you should have a bachelor’s degree from a reputable dental school. You should also have many years of experience working with dental patients.

Is the dentist accredited by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD)?

If you’ve ever been to a dentist, you know that the field is very competitive. Even though the doctor is certified by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), that doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she is the best one to take care of your teeth.

If you are feeling a little self-conscious about your smile, a cosmetic dentist can help. 

Frequently asked questions

What is Cosmetic Dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry is generally used to refer to any dental work that improves the appearance (though not necessarily the functionality) of teeth, gums and/or bite.

What Are Veneers?

Veneers are ultra-thin, custom-made porcelain laminates that are bonded directly to the teeth.

What is a diagnostic mock-up?

To achieve a pleasing smile, dentists fabricate diagnostic mock-ups, which act as a tooth preparation guide before the fabrication of veneers, it allows the dentist to visualize the changes needed to be done on the patient’s teeth with respect to size, shape and proportion, its relation with gingival-contour, lip contour and smile line.

What is tooth reshaping?

Tooth reshaping removes parts of the enamel to improve the appearance of the tooth.

What are the different types of cosmetic dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry may involve: the addition of a dental material to teeth or gums – examples: bonding, porcelain veneers (laminates), crowns gum grafts the removal of tooth structure or gums – examples: enameloplasty, gingivectomy neither adding nor removing dental materials, tooth structure, or gums – examples: teeth whitening (bleaching), laser whitening, gum depigmentation straightening of teeth accompanied by improvement in appearance of face orthodontics veneers, dental laminates – conservative scaling Teeth reshaping (sculpting) and bonding performed in one office visit.

What is Laser Whitening?

Laser whitening is a teeth whitening technique in which gums are covered with a rubber dam and a bleaching chemical is applied on the teeth.

What is a dental bridge?

A bridge is made up of abutments, the teeth that are prepped, and the missing, false teeth, which are called pontics.

Can I use a cantilever bridge?

In areas of the mouth that are under less stress, such as the front teeth, a cantilever bridge may be used.

What are the risks?

Bridges require commitment to serious oral hygiene and carry risk.

What Is Bonding?

Bonding is a process in which an enamel dental composite material is color matched, applied to a tooth’s surface, sculpted into proper tooth contour, hardened and then polished.

What are direct composite restorations?

Teeth damaged by small to moderate decay, erosion, or small fractures can be repaired with direct composite restorations bonded to the teeth.

What Are the Benefits of Cosmetic Dentistry?

Here’s a breakdown of common cosmetic dental procedures and why they might be necessary.

Are Braces For Adults?

Most people think braces are for kids, but more and more adults are getting braces to get the smile they’ve always wanted.

What Are Dental Veneers?

Veneers are thin porcelain shells which fit over the facial surface of the teeth.

What are the benefits of Veneers?

Veneers are ideal for people who have dark staining which doesn’t go away with bleaching, as well as chipped or fractured front teeth.

Who Should Buy This Treatment?

It’s great for people who don’t need anything more than a little bit of brightening, or for people who don’t want to make a huge commitment.

How do I get tooth whitening?

Tooth whitening can be done in the office or at home, but it’s wise to get the bleach from your dentist.

What are the best ways to lighten your gum?

Lighten your gum shade with LASER assisted gum depigmentation.