Cosmetic Dentistry

Tooth Whitening
Bonding
Porcelain Laminates
Cosmetic dentistry is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve your appearance. A beautiful, bright, healthy smile can increase self confidence and overall life satisfaction.

Many regular dental treatments can be cosmetic. Modern tooth-colored fillings are virtually invisible when compared to traditional silver fillings. Tooth-colored crowns or caps can be placed instead of gold or silver. In this section, we will look at some of the best treatments we can use to greatly improve your smile and the way you feel about yourself.

Tooth Whitening

Dramatically whiten your smile.

The Problem:

Dull colored or stained teeth.

The Solution:

Plastic whitening trays will be made from models of your teeth. You will then place a special whitening gel in each tray and wear the trays in your mouth for several hours per day. (Many patients wear their trays after dinner and before bed.) A significant change in tooth color is usually seen in just four to six weeks.

Advantages:

Modern tooth whitening systems are highly effective and have dramatic results. Many celebrities consistently whiten their teeth to improve their appearance.

Disadvantages:

Occasionally, patients may experience some gum or tooth sensitivity when using their trays. These symptoms subside when whitening is discontinued for several days.

Alternatives:

Occasionally, teeth may be stained in a way that limits the effectiveness of tooth whitening. In those instances, porcelain laminates or crowns are an excellent alternative.

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Bonding

Restore chipped teeth and fill gaps between teeth.

The Problem:

Unsightly gaps between front teeth.
Slightly chipped teeth.
Rough or jagged edges on front teeth.
Dull colored or stained teeth.
The Solution:

Composite resin is a white, tooth colored material that can be shaded to match your teeth. This material is applied to your teeth and sculpted to cover or replace the problem area. The material bonds to the surface of your teeth like a glue. It is often “cured” or hardened with an intense ultraviolet light.

Advantages:

When skillfully applied and sculpted, this material allows you to have a natural, beautiful improvement in your smile.

Disadvantages:

Bonding is initially less expensive than porcelain veneers. However, it tends to break down and discolor in several years and will need to be replaced. For this reason, porcelain restorations are usually more cost effective over time.

Alternatives:

Porcelain laminates or crowns are an excellent, longer lasting alternative.

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Porcelain Laminates

Completely reshape your teeth for a beautiful, white smile.

The Problem:

Stained or discolored teeth.
Unsightly gaps between front teeth.
Chipped teeth.
Rough or jagged edges on front teeth.
Teeth that are too small or large in proportion to the rest of the mouth.
Crooked or worn teeth.
The Solution:

A porcelain laminate (often called a veneer) is a thin shell of porcelain that covers the front of each tooth. They bond directly to the front of the tooth, similar to the way artificial fingernails work. Each porcelain laminate is a work of art, carefully crafted in a laboratory to fit your individual smile.

Advantages:

In the hands of a highly skilled dentist, porcelain laminates can provide you with an incredibly natural, beautiful smile. They are virtually undetectable and can dramatically improve your appearance. They are durable and long-lasting when compared to other cosmetic treatments.

Disadvantages:

Although they are highly durable, porcelain laminates are not permanent. Well crafted laminates will last many years, but will eventually need to be replaced.

Alternatives:

Porcelain laminates are an excellent investment. However, they are not appropriate for teeth with excessive decay. In those cases, porcelain crowns are the only alternative. In the event that you desire only to improve tooth alignment, orthodontic treatment may be another alternative.

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