Your dentist’s primary concern is helping you maintain the overall health and wellness of your smile. But with modern dentistry, that’s just the beginning – your dentist has many tools at his disposal to greatly improve the appearance of your smile, as well.
Nowadays many people are familiar with the term cosmetic dentistry, but you may not be well-versed on everything that is included. Thankfully, Dr. Lordo’s office offers a variety of cosmetic services – here’s what you should know to get started.
What is Cosmetic Dentistry?
As the name implies, cosmetic dentistry refers to a variety of procedures whose primary goal is improving the appearance of your smile. This can include relatively simple measures like teeth whitening, up to significant procedures like imbedding implants or orthodontic appliances like braces and bridges.
It’s always important to have a conversation with your dentist when deciding on a cosmetic procedure. He or she can walk you through the procedure, costs, aftercare, and ultimately if it will improve the appearance and health of your smile.
One of the most basic cosmetic dental procedures is teeth whitening. Choosing from a variety of bleaching agents, your dentist can lighten the shade of your teeth by four to six shades; bleaching can also be done at home.
After a thorough cleaning, your dentist covers your gums with a protective barrier, then evenly applies a bleaching agent to the visible surfaces of your teeth. The entire procedure takes a little less than an hour, and the results can last as much as a year with diligent oral hygiene.
A dental implant provides a significant cosmetic improvement for a missing or irreplaceable tooth, while also serving as a highly functional replacement.
When a tooth is missing or cannot be repaired, a dental surgeon can surgically implant a titanium anchor into the jawbone. An abutment is attached to the anchor which protrudes above the gums. Finally, a synthetic tooth is crafted and attached to the abutment, giving the appearance and full function of a regular tooth.
Implants offer a strong and permanent replacement for a missing tooth, but require enough bone in the jaw to be placed securely.
Where implants are a complete replacement of a tooth or teeth, veneers are custom-made shells that are permanently placed over the front of a tooth, changing its shape and color. Primarily a cosmetic improvement, veneers rely on the structure of the underlying tooth to be sound in order to be placed.
Veneers are usually crafted from porcelain or a durable resin, and are usually employed for the most serious cosmetic improvements, such as for chipped or crooked teeth, permanently stained surfaces, substantial gaps between teeth, and teeth that are significantly misshaped.
The condition of your smile can have a major impact on your confidence and self-image. And if you’ve wondered whether anything can be done to improve a cosmetic issue with your own teeth, our staff at Dr. Lordo’s office is happy to help determine what option is best for you. To get started, call us at 614-310-4522, or request your first appointment online.