Cosmetic dentistry is a special aspect within the field of dental practice that aims at improving the appearance of teeth, this does not necessarily mean that the focus is on your overall oral health. This makes cosmetic dental procedures non-mandatory. However, there are quite a lot of benefits to getting cosmetic procedures done, including boosting your general confidence, making regular cleaning less of a hassle and even reducing the frequency of grinding.
In most places, cosmetic dentistry is not recognized as a specialization itself, but rather, it is a specialty training that has been received by regular dentists (like orthodontists) where they have been trained in more than one area of dental medicine that can be considered cosmetic because they are not essential procedures.
Difference between cosmetic dentistry and general dentistry
- Cleanings, root canals, fillings, etc come under general dentistry. All dental offices or clinics will be able to provide these services.
- Cosmetic dentistry is more to do with beautifying procedures that make your looks and smile better. These are secondary procedures done based on patient requests rather than a requirement.
The update on cosmetic procedures
- Procedures are new and improve in the field of dentistry today. They are quick, effective and in multiple cases, even pain-free.
- Procedures like gum treatments or laser teeth whitening are painless today. Dentists do not even resort to using anesthesia on patients.
- For more complicated procedures, (like for example, implants) patients are sedated and state-of-the-art lasers are used to make precise incisions.
- Patients need not be anxious anymore due to the new and upcoming technology in the field.
Why do people get cosmetic procedures done?
- As earlier stated, cosmetic procedures do not improve dental health, yet why do people get them done? The answer is simple, it is to improve their quality of life.
- Cosmetic procedures enhance your looks or fix something that was not aligned perfectly in your mouth. Upon receiving treatment, patients get a boost in confidence.
- People smile feeling less conscious about how their mouth makes them look.
- They avoid feeling embarrassed about chipped, crooked or stained teeth.
- Some people who are conscious about receding gums or a gap can get that rectified.
Some examples of cosmetic treatments
- Teeth whitening treatments – There are multiple forms of treatments when it comes to getting your teeth whitened. There are laser and bleaching treatments that can lighten the teeth for up to 16 shades.
- Bleaching – A common chemical process used to whiten teeth to make stains disappear or generally give it a whiter shade.
- Straightening teeth (orthodontics) – Invisalign and traditional braces are offered for this treatment. Since the kind of treatment need varies from person to person, the dentist will make appropriate recommendations and refer a specialist for the same.
- Veneers – These are thin shells made of porcelain that are bonded to the front portion of a tooth. This is a treatment that is resorted to as an alternative to orthodontics and when teeth or tooth discoloration has to be addressed.
- Bridges – These are used to fill the space between huge gaps and missing teeth. They are comparatively less invasive and help in improving the appearance of teeth without really straightening or replacing it.
- Crowns – These help in capping and repairing cracked or chipped teeth, thereby restoring their normal shape.
- Implants – Teeth may require to be replaced in cases where there is severe tooth decay or there has been an injury (sometimes, simply due to age.) Implant technology helps replace these with false teeth.
- Grinding (Bruxism) – Porcelain inlays are used and straightening is done to improve the bite and curb unconscious grinding.
- Botox – Botulinum toxin is utilized to reduce wrinkles and fine lines. This is done by paralyzing underlying muscles. It is also used as a treatment for migraines, muscular disorders, excessive sweating, etc.
- Reshaping and contouring – These are usually used to alter the shape, length or position of your teeth. This can be used to correct small issues.
- Composite bonding – It is a technique where damaged, decayed or discolored teeth are repaired using a material that resembles the color of the tooth’s enamel. The inside of the tooth is drilled out to remove the decay and composite is applied to the surface which will be further sculpted into the right shape.
How to know if a procedure is right for you?
- First, ask yourself what you want to alter and if you want to stick by your decision.
- Find out what the changes will look like once the procedure is finished. Do some research.
- Ask your dentist. He or she can help clarify and provide the best options based on your requirements.
- Find out what you should be expecting during the cosmetic treatment.
- Get full details on the maintenance after the procedure is complete.
What to look for in a cosmetic dentist
- Do your groundwork. Ask for before and after photos to examine the results of other patients who have gone through the procedure you are currently interested in.
- Get references. This makes the process more credible and you will have assurance about the quality of treatment you are receiving.
- Documentation and proof: with all the fad practitioners out in the world today, it is best to be certain that your dentist knows what he or she is doing. They must also be updated on the latest techniques and best practices in the field of cosmetic dentistry.
The initial assumption about cosmetic dentistry was that only the wealthy could access it. Now, the scenario has changed because it is something, we all can try out. There a wide range of options to explore and the price range has also been modified. More or less all dentists do at least some kind of cosmetic procedure nowadays from major oral surgeries to rectifying discolored, misshapen, chipped or missing teeth.
Dentists who provide these services are not rare, they can be found all around. Put a quick search to find a cosmetic dentist here or any other place in the world today.