When many people think of going to the dentist, they envision having their teeth cleaned or being instructed on the correct way to floss. While both of these things can definitely happen during a dental visit, oral hygiene is no longer the only reason to visit the dentist. In fact, many people are now opting to see their dentist as a way of improving the appearance of their smile with cosmetic dentistry. Cosmetic dental treatments offer various options to correct cosmetic imperfections, however there are some treatments that stand out above the rest. These are the top five cosmetic dental treatments:
One highly common cosmetic dental treatment is teeth whitening. Its popularity is due to the fact that it is very effective, affordable, and easy on the patient. During a whitening procedure, a whitening gel is applied to the surface of the teeth for 30-60 minutes. The whitening gel works by first being absorbed into the enamel and dentin, and then breaking apart discolored molecules. In as little as a single dental appointment, whitening procedures can lighten teeth by 5-10 shades.
Another highly common cosmetic dental treatment is veneers, due to their versatility. Veneers is one of the few cosmetic treatments that can address multiple cosmetic concerns with a single treatment. By having one or more veneers placed, you can easily improve the size, shape, color, alignment, and spacing of your teeth. To place veneers, a thin layer of enamel is usually removed. Once a dental lab has custom fabricated the veneers, they are then cemented to the front side of visible teeth.
Crowns or Bridges
Dental crowns can address many of the same cosmetic concerns as veneers, however they require more modification of the natural tooth structure. This is because crows are tooth-shaped caps that fit over the top of a single tooth and require that tooth to be reduced in size. However, this also makes dental crowns a better choice for teeth with significant damage or decay, since crowns are stronger than veneers. Additionally, dental bridges are multiple crowns and fake teeth that are fused together. They are used to replace one or more missing teeth and are supported by the remaining teeth.
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that are surgically placed into the jawbone. They are made from titanium and are extremely strong once they fuse with the surrounding bone. Dental implants are used to replace one or more missing teeth, and can even be used to reconstruct an entire smile. The number of teeth dental implants can restore is dependent on the type of prosthetic attached. Dental implants can support a crown, bridge, or denture.
Composite fillings are a type of dental filling that is made using composite resin. Unlike traditional metal fillings, composite fillings are considered to be highly aesthetic due to the fact that they can be matched to the exact color of one’s teeth. This allows dentists to restore small areas of decay while also improving the look of the teeth.
Maureen Karl, DDS, FAGD graduated in 2004, obtaining her DDS degree from the University of Buffalo School of Dental Medicine. She completed a general dentistry Residency at the Castle Point VA. This residency provided her with continued training in general dentistry including extractions, crowns, root canals, and the treatment of periodontal disease. Dr. Karl is a member of the Fort Worth District Dental Society, Academy of General Dentistry, and the American Dental Association. She is committed to furthering her education to better serve her patients.