What does cosmetic dentistry mean and what should you expect?
There is no surprise that cosmetic dentistry – along with braces – is possibly the greatest demand by patients over the last few years. Everybody wants to look their best, and your looks are just incomplete without a beautiful smile. Social media standards have raised the bar on the importance of one’s appearance, and with that raise came a rise in demand for aesthetic dentistry.
Cosmetic dentistry is the branch dealing with how your teeth and smile look. It deals directly with problems related to the outer surface of the teeth, and how they generally appear when you smile. A cosmetic dentist is one who focuses his\her focus on one sole purpose, and that is improving how your smile looks.
General dentistry mainly deals with your oral health, while cosmetic dentistry deals with your appearance. Procedures such as fillings, root canals, teeth extractions and cleaning and polishing all fall under the umbrella of general dentistry, while veneers, whitening and gum reshaping belong to the cosmetic dentistry (or aesthetic dentistry) branch. In some cases, the two branches intertwine, such as when the filling is involving a front tooth. For that reason, general dentists must have a good level of experience and knowledge in providing cosmetic dentistry, and vice versa.
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Smile makeovers are the most expensive cosmetic dental procedures, but they are also the most effective. In most cases, a complete smile makeover involves many procedures, including digital smile design, gum reshaping and of course the veneers themselves.
Some practices apply a “per tooth” system of the price calculation, where a single tooth costs between $400 and $1800, not including gum reshaping or other procedures. Other practices adopt a “package deal” situation, which can be a bit less costly if you can find them. In that case, a complete smile makeover could cost up to $40,000!
Love your smile
Improved oral care
Fix long term problems
Add strength and stability
Understanding your condition is the
key to making the right choices for you
Apart from fillings (and braces in some cases), cosmetic dentistry is almost never a “need”. No one really “needs” whiter teeth or a smile makeover, but everyone wants them. Therefore, cosmetic dentistry falls under the “want” rather than the “need” category. This of course does not apply to fillings that are definitely needed to prevent further damage to the teeth.
A variation of the smile makeover procedure. Snap-on smile is an easy, affordable solution made for people in a hurry, or those who don’t prefer filing and preparation of the teeth. It is a mold that fits on the outer surface of the teeth, drawn as a perfect smile, and correcting the shape and color of the teeth. It is removable (hence the name “Snap-On” and so requires no preparation, no shots, no pain and no damage to the teeth. Their only drawback is that they are quite fragile, so you should be restricted to a soft diet while wearing them.
Hollywood smile, Smile makeover, and dental makeover all point to the same form of treatment, and that is veneers. Veneers are a thin shell (about 0.3 – 0.5 mm thick) made of porcelain, that is attached to the outer layer of the teeth. These shells fix the shape, form, contour and color of the teeth on which they are attached. Veneers can be applied to a single tooth if the problem is localized (such as a fracture or a large decay in that tooth), or can be applied to all the front teeth visible in your smile, in which case it is named a smile makeover.
Yes of course. A number of options are available, such as braces, veneers and crowns. All of these can be helpful in fixing crooked teeth.
Cosmetic dental procedures are mostly elective, and most are quite invasive requiring teeth preparation or even surgery. That being said, in the right hands they are very safe and very reliable as well.
What most people don’t realize is that your smile is more than just teeth. The smile is composed of many variables, namely the teeth, lips, and gums. If your teeth are in perfect condition, but your gums look subpar, then your smile will be compromised, which is why gum reshaping is a big part of cosmetic dental treatments. In some cases, the gums could be enlarged due to gum disease or some types of medications, in which case removal of the cause of the problem is the main treatment. In other cases, the gums could be inherently larger than normal, or too much of it appears when you smile (called a gummy smile) and in that case, gum reshaping is essential for a beautiful smile. Gum reshaping could be done by lasers or through surgery.