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Cosmetic Procedures Improve Appearance and Self-Confidence

While most people would like to have a perfect smile, few of us are born with one. But now, those who are dissatisfied with the appearance of their teeth can turn to cosmetic dentistry for help. This method of professional oral care focuses on improving the appearance of your teeth, gums, and mouth for a more esthetically pleasing smile. Patients with stained, worn, chipped, misshapen, misaligned, missing teeth or with a “gummy” smile can all benefit from cosmetic dentistry.

Learn More About Cosmetic Dentistry at Brennan Dental

Cosmetic dentistry procedures are often elective dental care treatments rather than treatments essential for mouth health and function, though some cosmetic procedures do provide restorative oral health benefits.

Cosmetic dentists provide services including veneers, teeth whitening, tooth-colored fillings, crowns, inlays and onlays, bonding, and dental implants.

Though cosmetic dentistry hasn’t yet been officially recognized as a dental specialty, cosmetic dental work is becoming increasingly popular, with the industry projected to reach $32 billion by 2026. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry currently includes more than 6,000 dental professionals who specialize in cosmetic dentistry.

Cosmetic dentistry includes the following procedures:

  • Dental Veneers. Typically manufactured from medical-grade ceramic, a dental veneer is a thin custom-made cap that is applied to the front of your natural tooth with a dental adhesive. Veneers look exceptionally realistic and can resolve numerous cosmetic problems, ranging from crooked teeth to cracked or damaged enamel to noticeable gaps between teeth. Veneers can also fix a gummy smile by making teeth look larger and covering more of the gum line. Some patients prefer the ease of veneers to fix the appearance of misaligned teeth over the extended process of using traditional metal braces to realign teeth.
  • Teeth Whitening. Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures, as, over the years, teeth become stained from food, drinks, medication, and personal habits such as smoking. Teeth whitening can be performed at your dental office, usually in a single visit. The dental hygienist will first remove plaque, tartar, and other debris from each tooth’s surface, restoring its natural appearance. The tooth enamel can then be whitened with a bleaching agent to achieve a lighter, more pleasing shade. Teeth whitening can also be done at home with a kit provided to you by your dentist.
  • Tooth-Colored Fillings. Patients with tooth decay may have had their cavities filled with gold or silver fillings. (Silver fillings are usually an amalgam of metals, including silver.) A cosmetic dentist can replace metal-colored fillings with tooth-colored fillings, which are comprised of plastic, silica, and glass particles (often referred to as a composite.) These substances replicate a lot of the qualities of natural teeth, like translucency and resistance to wear, restoring the appearance of your smile.
  • Dental Crowns. If a tooth is damaged but not so severely that it requires extraction, its shape, function, and appearance can be restored by using a porcelain crown. A dental crown is an artificial tooth that covers a natural tooth, protecting it from any further damage. Crowns are also used to cover misshapen or permanently discolored teeth. Crowns have a similar translucency as natural teeth, and your dentist can select a shade that matches your other teeth.
  • Inlays and Onlays. Inlays and onlays, also known as indirect fillings, are used when a tooth is too decayed to support a typical filling. These fillings are created in a dental laboratory and bonded in place by a cosmetic dentist. A dental “inlay” is when the material is bonded in the center of the tooth. An “onlay” is when the filling covers one or more parts of the tooth or covers the tooth’s entire surface. This procedure is an alternative to the crown, preserving more of the tooth’s natural surface while still strengthening and restoring the tooth after decay or deterioration.
  • Dental Bonding. Bonding can repair chips, cracks, misshapen teeth, and tooth decay. With dental bonding, the cosmetic dentist removes any tooth decay and applies a moldable resin to the tooth, hardening it with ultraviolet light. They then trim, shape, and polish the material to blend into the surface of the tooth. For minor cosmetic issues, bonding is a more affordable alternative to fillings or crowns.
  • Dental Implants. Dental implants are used to replace lost or irreparably damaged teeth. A small titanium screw is inserted into the jaw at the site of the missing tooth to act as a tooth root, serving as the support for a crown. Once the bone and supporting tissue fuse to the implanted screw, the crown is placed. Implants are virtually indistinguishable from your surrounding natural teeth. 

The benefits of cosmetic dentistry include:

  • Increased self-confidence. An enhanced appearance via cosmetic dentistry makes you feel better about yourself and can improve your social interactions. 
  • Improved oral health. Several cosmetic dental procedures improve the health of your teeth.
  • Improved diet. Certain cosmetic dental procedures improve mouth function, making it easier to consume some types of food.

Disadvantages of cosmetic dentistry include:

  • Teeth sensitivity. Teeth whitening and the drilling required for crowns can make your teeth sensitive to temperature. 
  • Risk of infection. Dental implants have a risk of infection and post-surgery bleeding.
  • Permanence. Most cosmetic dental procedures are permanent and cannot be reversed.
  • Cost. While some cosmetic dental procedures are relatively cheap, several procedures cost thousands of dollars and may not be covered by insurance.

At Brennan Dental, we offer comprehensive cosmetic dentistry services to our patients. Our trusted and friendly staff will provide best-in-class cosmetic dental care, and we’ll ensure that your visit is a pleasant one. When it comes to our patients, we have one goal in mind: giving you the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted! 

Schedule an Appointment Today!

If you’d like to improve the appearance of your smile, contact us today to schedule a consultation — and find out what cosmetic dentistry can do for you!