The Ins and Outs of Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry is the somewhat unsung hero of the dental world. Braces, fillings, and root canals often claim the limelight and deservedly so; these treatments address serious health issues within the mouth and allow people to continue to live healthy lives.

Happy couple with white straight smiles

While cosmetic dentistry doesn’t necessarily always treat health issues, it does help to treat a number of other problems. A teeth whitening, a dental implant or a porcelain veneer can have an enormously beneficial effect and lead to improvements in a number of areas of your life.

A whiter, straighter smile can help make people more social, mean you laugh more often, and it may help turn back years of self-doubt. Here’s a rundown of all the cosmetic treatments that are available to you.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is a popular form of cosmetic dentistry. Everyone wants that million-dollar smile and that means having perfectly white teeth to flash. Having white teeth isn’t actually a mark of dental or physical health, but having white teeth does have a huge impact on the look of your smile and you can’t put a price on that.

Age and staining substances such as tea, coffee, cola, tobacco and red wine slowly darken teeth. In order to lighten teeth, Dr Olstein can use the active ingredient hydrogen peroxide to reverse this process and lighten the internal colour of the teeth.

Dr Olstein offers two systems of professional tooth whitening: in-chair whitening and at-home whitening. In-chair whitening uses a gel, which contains hydrogen peroxide and a bright laser-like light to activate the whitening agent. In chair-whitening usually takes about an hour and the results are immediately visible. Home whitening involves the fitting and wearing of custom-made trays overnight. Home whitening is more cost effective than in-chair whitening, but the results do take longer to appear.

Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers are often compared to fake nails. They are thin slivers of tooth-coloured porcelain that are bonded to existing teeth in order to cover irregularities such as stains, chips and to cover up broken or crooked teeth. Veneers are extremely strong and durable and if porcelain veneers are used they are unlikely to stain or lose their appearance.

Porcelain veneers are more expensive than composite veneers but they are worth the investment. Three appointments are usually required to fit porcelain veneers, the first for diagnosis and planning, the second for preparing the teeth and the third for bonding the veneers with the teeth. Local anaesthetic is used and the entire treatment should be relatively pain-free.

Dental Implants

A missing tooth is a nightmare for both the aesthetics of your smile, and your mouth function. Anyone who has been unlucky enough to lose an adult tooth, either through trauma or age, knows how horrible it is to look in the mirror for the first time and realise your smile looks completely different.

Dental implants aren’t the only way to address a missing tooth, but they are the most natural option. A dental implant consists of two parts. The first is a titanium post, which looks like a miniature metal screw. This screw acts like the root of your tooth and is screwed directly into your jawbone. Once the screw has fused with the jaw, a crown can be placed on top of the screw creating, a completely natural looking dental implant.

All on 4 Dental Implants

All on 4 dental implants are a more comprehensive from of dental implants and are often used as an alternative to dentures. This procedure is popular amongst elderly people as it allows for a full set of implants to be fitted on only 4 screws. This makes cleaning easier and it also means that this treatment is an option for people who don’t have the necessary bone density for normal implant treatment.

In this treatment, 4 titanium posts can support a whole arch of teeth and it only takes up to 3 days for these implants to begin functioning as normal teeth.

Dental Crowns

Dental crowns are used for traditional dentistry as well as cosmetic dentistry. Crowns can help to strengthen weak teeth, as well as cover up any cosmetic issues such as cracks and breaks. Crowns can also be used to correct misshapen teeth and cover up any discoloured teeth.

Fitting a crown will often take two visits; the first visit will involve shaping your teeth so that the crown can be applied. The second visit will be dedicated to bonding the crown to your tooth.

Cerec Crowns and Inlays

Cerec crowns and inlays use CAD/CAM technology, which allows crowns and inlays to be fitted in one session. After your tooth has been prepared, a small camera takes an image of your mouth. Using this image, the crown is then created out of a block of porcelain (which takes approximately 40 minutes) and in the same appointment the crown is bonded to the tooth.

This technology addresses all of the cosmetic issues that traditional crown and inlay treatments do, but takes far less time and is far less invasive.

Digital Smile Design

Digital Smile Design is a revolutionary dentistry technology that allows your cosmetic dentist to give you an idea of what your smile will look like after cosmetic dental treatment. Digital smile design uses photo and videos to create a simulation of your new smile. This means you can choose the type of treatment you want by seeing the results of different types or combinations of treatments.

For example, by using the technology you could compare how many teeth it will take to improve your smile to see which one you prefer. Cosmetic dental treatments can be expensive and digital smile design allows you to see just what you can expect from your investment.

If you’d like to make an appointment with Dr George Olstein to discuss any cosmetic dentistry services, please don’t hesitate to contact us today. We are always happy to answer any queries you might have.