Everyone wants a bright and healthy smile, but the majority of individuals have imperfections ranging from discoloration to missing teeth. Fortunately, there are cosmetic dental techniques to correct these issues and give you the smile you’ve always wanted. Choosing cosmetic dental work is an excellent way to elevate your confidence and self-esteem.
What Is Cosmetic Dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry refers to procedures and techniques that improve the appearance of your teeth, gums, and bite. You can choose to whiten your teeth to remove stains and achieve a brighter, even color and fix cracked and chipped teeth. Other options correct alignment problems and gaps, or the size and shape of your teeth. If you are missing one or more teeth due to dental disease or trauma, there are ways to give you back a full smile for better speech, function, and aesthetic appeal.
Who Is a Candidate for Cosmetic Dentistry?
Most healthy people can elect to have the cosmetic dental service of their choice. It all starts with a visit to your dentist for a complete evaluation and consultation to check the current health of your teeth and gums. You need to address any cavities, tooth decay, or gum disease first before you can undergo cosmetic corrections.
Once your mouth is healthy, your dentist will discuss your options and explain the various procedures that can help you get the smile you want. You may need to have X-rays and images taken of your mouth to identify any potential concerns and ensure you have adequate bone tissue to support certain procedures like implants.
Popular Cosmetic Dentistry Techniques for an Improved Smile
Some of the most popular cosmetic dental services today are implants, veneers, and dentures.
Dental implants are a permanent solution for tooth loss. A titanium post placed into the jawbone mimics tooth roots. The bone tissue grows around the implant, making it secure and providing the foundation for a crown. Your dentist will match the color of your replacement teeth to your natural teeth, creating a seamless and realistic appearance.
The nature of dental implants requires you to invest several months into the process. Placing the implants is a surgical procedure that requires proper recovery time. Getting multiple implants can increase the healing time. Once completed, implants require typically oral health practices and regular dental visits for cleanings and checkups. However, they can last for up to 25 years if you take care of them.
Veneers are thin, strong shells made from medical-grade ceramic or composite resin. The shell is affixed to the front of your teeth to conceal many cosmetic flaws like stains, gaps, cracks, and chips. They don’t surround the entire tooth.
Veneers are easy to place and repair. You can sometimes have them applied in a single visit, making veneers a fast solution. They also are less invasive than other methods and have a lower chance of causing damage to your gums. Your dentist may need to remove some enamel and shape your teeth to affix the veneer shell properly.
There are several types of veneers to choose from. Some are reversible. Most require replacement every so often, usually from four to fifteen years, depending on the material. Our team at Chappaqua Dentistry has the experience and knowledge necessary to help you decide which is right for you.
Dentures are a solid option if you are missing most or all of your teeth. Traditional dentures are removable prosthetics that look just like natural teeth. They use an oral adhesive to stay in place. Choose between complete dentures to replace all your teeth, or partial dentures to fill in empty gaps between your natural teeth. It takes anywhere from six weeks to several months to get fitted for dentures and have them completed.
Dentures last a long time if you take proper care of them. Most require replacement after seven to ten years. The prosthetics are unique to you, to address your specific needs and shape. However, dentures require regular removal and cleaning to avoid infections. Some patients also find their dentures uncomfortable at first or are bothered by looseness that affects speech and the ability to eat certain foods.
Choosing the Cosmetic Dentistry Service That’s Right for You
There are several factors to take into consideration when choosing the best procedure for your unique situation and desired results:
- The current state of teeth and gums: The right treatment depends largely on your needs and oral health. For example, veneers are more suited for minor cosmetic corrections, implants are a great option for those missing one or more teeth, and dentures are a good choice if you need to replace many or all of your teeth. All techniques require you to have good overall oral health. You may need additional treatments or surgeries to repair gum and bone tissue before you can move on to cosmetics.
- Recovery time: All procedures are different. The complexity of the technique and the number of teeth that require treatment play the biggest role in your recovery time.
- Maintenance and permanence: Are you looking for a procedure that requires little ongoing maintenance? Are you willing to invest a significant amount of time to achieve your desired results over the course of several appointments? Some treatments, such as implants, take more time to complete since they involve several steps where you must wait for your mouth to heal but deliver longer-lasting results. If you are concerned about the appearance of unfinished cosmetic dental work, talk to your dentist. Short-term options are often available to improve the look and function of your teeth while you wait for the next step.
At Chappaqua Dentistry, we understand that you need personalized care and attention that delivers results and also fits into your lifestyle. We’ll help you understand the various procedures, what to expect, and how to choose the best one.
Schedule Your Appointment Today
If you feel self-conscious over the appearance of your smile, call Chappaqua Dentistry today to schedule an initial appointment. Our team of dentists and technicians is ready to answer your questions and get started on a treatment plan to finally give you the healthy and gorgeous smile of your dreams.