Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments
Some cosmetic dentistry interventions are more common than others. These are some of the most popular among our patient population:
- Dental bonding: Resin is applied to the tooth and cured to restore a minor defect, such as a small chip or crack.
- Teeth whitening: A bleaching agent is applied to the tooth in order to eliminate stains and reverse the gradual yellowing of the teeth that occurs with age. We offer both in-office and at-home teeth whitening treatments in a variety of packages to fit patients’ needs.
- Veneers: Thin, tooth-shaped shell that is bonded to the front surface of a biological tooth to conceal flaws. Veneers can be used when the defects are too substantial to be addressed by dental bonding.
The initial step in cosmetic dentistry treatment is to schedule a consultation. We will ask about your smile goals, examine your smile and recommend the interventions most likely to be effective in your case.
The exams that take place at these check-ups give your dentist an opportunity to monitor your teeth and gums at regular intervals, increasing your chances that any problems that do develop will be diagnosed and treated early before they have a chance to do much damage. In the case of oral cancer, which your dentist will screen for, such exams can actually improve your chances of survival.
Fluoride treatments may also be recommended as part of your preventive care. This helps to remineralize and strengthen teeth, offering some additional protection against decay.
What To Expect From The Treatment Process
The cosmetic dentistry treatment process will depend on the particular intervention or interventions involved. Some treatments, such as dental bonding or teeth whitening, can be completed in as little as an hour. Additionally, patients do not need any local anesthetic for those procedures.
Veneer design and placement is more complex and takes place over multiple appointments spaced out a few weeks apart. At the first appointment, the dentist gathers information needed for the design of the veneers, and that information is forwarded to the dental lab that will create the veneers. Depending on the thickness of the veneers, your teeth may also be prepped at that first appointment to make room for them. When the veneers are back from the lab, you’ll return to the office at that time to have them bonded to your teeth.
Patients who are planning to receive multiple cosmetic dentistry interventions will need to work with the dentist to plan the timing of those treatments. For example, veneers do not respond to teeth whitening treatments, so you should be satisfied with the shade of your teeth before having your veneers placed. This means that teeth whitening should occur before veneer placement. Your dentist will give you more thorough information about what to expect from the various aspects of the cosmetic dentistry treatment process.