Often thought of as only obtainable by celebrities, cosmetic dentistry is actually a rapidly growing industry. As visiting the cosmetic dentist become more popular and more affordable it also become more accessible to the general public.
Cosmetic dentistry focuses mostly on improving the appearance (and often times the functionality and health) of your teeth and gums. Common cosmetic procedures include bite reclamation, bonding, bridges, gum lifts, reshaping, veneers, and teeth whitening. Some procedures involve the addition of material(s) to your teeth and/or gums, like bonding, crowns, and veneers. Some require removing material from your teeth and/or gums. Finally, some require neither the addition nor removal of materials, like straightening and whitening.
In cosmetic bonding, an enamel-like substance is used to reshape a tooth or teeth as needed. After it is applied and sculpted, the material hardens and is polished. It closely resembles the natural appearance of the surrounding teeth and can be used to fill chips and perfect other such misshapen teeth.
Bridges are used to replace missing teeth. Crowns must be inserted onto the two adjacent teeth. The false tooth is then fused to the crowns to hold it in place. When properly cared for, they can last for ten years or even longer.
A gum lift is the process by which a cosmetic dentist raises and reshapes your gum line. It may involve simply sculpting the gum tissue, or, in more extreme cases, the underlying bone structure may need reshaping. The end goal is to give the teeth a more symmetrical and (if desirable) longer appearance.
Reshaping teeth requires removing bits of the enamel to create the desired look. It can improve the length, positioning, and shape of affected teeth and can fix small chips. The potential issue with enameloplasty is that once the enamel is removed it cannot be replaced. People still opt for it under some circumstances to avoid getting braces and because the results are so fast.
Veneers are also wildly popular for perfecting the appearance of one’s smile. They are made up of porcelain and/or composite materials that mimic teeth’s natural appearance, color, and structure. They are applied in very thin layers that are bonded directly to the teeth. They can completely close gaps as well as disguise discolored teeth that cannot be sufficiently lightened. Christie Brinkley, Kathie Lee Gifford, and Donald Trump are all rumored to have porcelain veneers.
Whitening is by far the most commonly practiced procedure in the industry. There are dozens of over-the-counter at-home whitening products available. However, professional treatments by a cosmetic dentist are recommended for ideal results.
If you are looking to have your smile enhanced cosmetically, Dr. Poss can help build a smile you love! Call the office at (615) 373-1056 to get started today!