What Is Included in Cosmetic Dentistry?
If you have been looking for a dentist, you may have come across the category of cosmetic dental work. What does this category of service include, and how can it benefit you?
Defining Cosmetic Dental Work
To start, you are likely to notice two terms in dental surgery. The first is reconstructive surgery, which strives to repair the normal function after an injury or other issues. The second term is cosmetic dentistry, which is used to improve the appearance of your mouth and jaw and is more about form than function. However, such work can also have the desirable effect of significantly improving your oral function and health.
For example, getting porcelain fillings that are the same color as your teeth can help improve your appearance, but such fillings also do not require nearly as much tooth structure removal as metal fillings. This then improves both your appearance and supports oral health.
Another very common form of cosmetic dental work is teeth whitening. You can perform teeth whitening over a period of time with over-the-counter whitening products, or you can visit a dentist to get whiter teeth in only one visit.
Common Types of Cosmetic Dental Work
There are many other cosmetic dentistry procedures aside from teeth whitening, including the following:
• Bonding is when a composite material is used to fill chips or gaps in your teeth
• Teeth straightening uses various orthodontic implements to straighten teeth and improve bite
• Contouring uses teeth filing to create a smooth appearance
• Crowns are caps that restore tooth color and/or shape
• Gum lifts or grafts reshape gum tissue and/or bones to give teeth a more symmetrical appearance
• Porcelain veneers cover your teeth to give a more appealing color and/or to fill in gaps
• Gum depigmentation removes discolored spots or patches from your teeth
• Dentures, implants, and bridges are false teeth that replace missing teeth
All of these procedures can potentially improve your oral health as well as your appearance and comfort.
Finding a Qualified Cosmetic Dentist
Because there is no technical recognition of cosmetic dental work as a specialty, many dentists offer cosmetic treatments as part of their services. That’s why it’s important to consider qualifying questions when looking for a cosmetic dentist for implants or other work. Questions to ask include:
• How long has the dentist been practicing?
• What kinds of patient comforts are provided?
• Does the practice provide personalized care for all patients?
• Is cosmetic dental work a prominent feature of the practice?
The last one is a very important consideration as there is an artistic element to cosmetic dental work that can make a big difference in how the final result turns out.
What to Expect at a Consultation
Consultations are a valuable opportunity to learn more about the practice that you have selected. Record-gathering is common at cosmetic dental consultations and may include:
• Dental history, X-rays, and reports for a proper diagnosis
• 3-D scanning for extraction and/or replacement procedures
• Medical history and prescribed medications
• Discussion of tooth shape, size, and color for implants
If you decide to continue with surgery, you will be provided with further instructions and information.
At Good Samaritan Dental Implant Institute in West Palm Beach, Florida, we provide personalized care in an effort to restore your dental health and help improve your appearance.