Cosmetic dentistry encompasses any dental work that improves the appearance of the dental aesthetics in their color, size, shape and alignment and the overall appearance of your smile. This means teeth that are discolored, misshapen or even missing can be rectified using a number of techniques. These procedures are not only just for aesthetic appeal but they can also help to rectify oral health problems such as how you bite. Some of the most common cosmetic dental procedures include crowns, bonding, bleaching, contouring, reshaping, and bleaching.
Bleaching is a chemical process that is used to make the teeth whiter or clear the discoloration on the enamel. Discolorations of the enamel can be as a result of tea, coffee or cigarettes. Some medication also causes the discoloration. Other common causes of enamel discoloration are age and hereditary factors.
Teeth bleaching can also be done with the help of an argon laser beam which accelerates the bleaching process. Using the laser beam makes the bleaching process more effective as compared to other whitening techniques.
Bonding is a form of restoration using a material of the same color as the teeth to fill gaps or to change the color of the teeth. Chipped teeth, slightly decayed enamels or cavities can all be rectified by bonding. The procedure once done will last for several years. It can also be extensively used to cover the entire tooth surface if one wants to change its shape and color.
Crowns are also referred to as caps and they are used to cover a tooth to restore its original shape and appearance. They have a very long life expectancy once installed, but they also happen to be one of the most time consuming dental procedures. Because crowns are so expensive, dentists use them where other procedures are not effective.
These are thin pieces of porcelain or plastic and are usually placed over the teeth to change their color or shape. This is an alternative procedure to crowning since it is less costly. Veneers work on teeth that have uneven surfaces or spacing and on discolored teeth. This procedure requires little or no anesthesia.
Contouring and shaping
This is a procedure that is used to correct chipped, overlapping, irregularly-shaped and crooked teeth in one session. The contouring and shaping alters the position, length, and shape of teeth. Contouring helps to improve functions of teeth such as biting.
This is another cosmetic dental procedure which serves to raise and sculpt the gum line. This will involve reshaping the gum tissue and sometimes even the underlying bones. The end result is will give the appearance of longer or teeth that are more symmetrical.