Cosmetic Dentistry

by on March 31, 2012 | Posted in Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry refers to any dental procedure that is aimed at improving the appearance of a person’s teeth, gums and/ or bite. These procedures correct the simplest dental problems to severe ones. The procedures also improve the functions of the teeth which include chewing food properly, as well as speaking properly. Medical practitioners who perform these dental procedures are known as cosmetic dentists.

Cosmetic dentistry has been classified into two categories: orthodontics and prosthodontics. The field of orthodontics deals with studying and treating ‘bad bites’ or malocclusions. Bad bites may be due to tooth irregularity, jaw misalignment or both. Prosthetic dentistry has been popularly known as prosthodontics. This field deals with the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of oral appearance and function.

Cosmetic dentistry may involve:

  1. Addition of a dental material to the teeth or gums. For example: bonding, porcelain veneers, crowns, gum grafts.
  2. The removal of tooth structure or gums- examples: enameloplasty, gingivectomy.
  3.  Neither adding nor removing dental materials, tooth structure or gums- examples: teeth whitening.
  4. Straightening of teeth accompanied by improvement in appearance of the face, orthodontics.

Common cosmetic dentistry options include:

  • Whitening- this is the most common cosmetic dental procedure. It is also known as tooth bleaching. Whitening options include over the counter products and dentist supervised treatments which remain the recommended procedures for lightening discolored teeth.
  • Tooth reshaping entails the removal of the enamel to enhance the appearance of the tooth. It may be used to correct a small chip, or to alter the length, shape or position of teeth. It can be used to correct crooked more excessively long teeth. The removed enamel is irreplaceable, and may sometimes expose the dentin.
  • Bonding is a process in which enamel like dental composite material is applied to a tooth’s surface, sculptured into shape, hardened then polished.
  • Dental bridges. These are false teeth that are fused between two porcelain crowns to fill in the area left by a missing tooth. Bridges reduce the risk of gum disease, help correct some bite issues and even improve speech. They require proper oral hygiene and they last as many as ten years or more.
  • Veneers. They are ultra thin, custom made porcelain laminates that are bonded directly to the teeth. They close gaps and disguise discolored teeth that do not respond to whitening.

Having dental structures that are natural looking is what has always been preferred by both dentists and patients of cosmetic dentistry.


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Ever Heard of Ivisalign?

by on February 20, 2012 | Posted in orthodontics

What could be better than having that perfect smile to boost your confidence? No doubt, having teeth in perfect shape can make or break your day. But what if you weren’t born with properly aligned teeth? Of course, there are dental procedures to fix the problem with the use of braces being the most common treatment option. However, there are many people who shy away from wearing braces just because it could affect their looks. A good answer to such concerns is the use of invisalign, which is actually an aesthetic orthodontic procedure involving a series of clear aligners that are aimed at correcting malaligned teeth, smiles and bites.

The treatment works best for adults, seniors and even teenagers. This concept of employing invisible removable appliances for moving teeth is becoming increasingly popular. The reason many people prefer these aligners over braces is the fact that they aren’t visible and easily fit with the user’s lifestyle as well as day-to-day interactions. As these invisible braces are removable, users have the flexibility of eating and drinking during treatment by removing them. And the aligners can be removed for brushing and flossing as well. They also don’t have any metal brackets that may cause mouth irritation.

After a person has undergone the treatment, it is important to keep the aligners clean by taking special care of them. The aligners should be properly brushed in between snacking as well as meals with toothpaste. Furthermore, it is recommended to soak them for at least ten minutes in a denture cleaning liquid every morning.


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