How people relate to us moving forward is often based on first impressions. With that in mind, what happens when someone smiles awkwardly or even totally refuses to smile because they’re afraid to show their teeth? That sends a message and sometimes that message is misunderstood.

The good news is, with today’s dental technology and cosmetic treatment options, people now have multiple solutions available to them to help tackle this problem. But, when it comes to cosmetic dentistry, it’s easy to get confused and overwhelmed as you try to sort through all the options in treatment, though. So, here are some of the most common questions about cosmetic dentistry and their answers to help you get started in the right direction:

 

What Is Cosmetic Dentistry?

 

Think of cosmetic dentistry as caring for both your oral health AND your smile! Cosmetic dentistry helps to improve the appearance of your teeth, gums, and mouth, which in turn will also help make maintaining good oral hygiene easier. Cosmetic dentistry services include teeth whitening, inlays, onlays, veneers, bonding, braces, and dental implants to provide you with the highest-quality aesthetic results. Here at TLC Dental Center, we offer a wide variety of cosmetic dentistry treatment options to help you achieve a smile you are proud to show off.

 

Does That Mean a Cosmetic Dentist Can Help My Crooked Teeth?

 

Absolutely! The fastest route to the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted is to fix crooked teeth. Crooked teeth can happen naturally or may be the result of not wearing a retainer in the past. Keep in mind, too, that misaligned or crooked teeth can lead to bite and jaw problems like TMJ. So, those jaw, neck, or headaches you are experiencing may be the result of crooked teeth. Crooked teeth are also hard to keep clean, which can lead to other oral health problems. 

The method of correction may differ based on the misalignment or bite problems. But either Invisalign clear aligners or veneers can help. Veneers are very thin shells directly bonded to the front of the tooth, and they cover a variety of dental issues. Veneers generally last longer than bonding and come in many shapes and sizes.

 

What Reasons Do People Have for Seeing a Cosmetic Dentist?

 

Most people see a cosmetic dentist for:

  • Crooked teeth
  • Damaged teeth (cracks, chips, etc.) 
  • Discoloration
  • Misshapen teeth
  • Missing teeth

 

Issues like these create embarrassment and discomfort for millions of people but can be affordably corrected by cosmetic dentistry.

 

The procedures done by a cosmetic dentist not only improve the appearance of your teeth but also benefit your overall oral health, too. Here’s how:

  • Implants prevent the movement of any surrounding teeth, as well as help to prevent further bone loss in the jaw and make chewing easier.
  • Tooth loss caused by decay or damage can be lessened with the use of inlays and onlays or full dental crowns.
  • Porcelain veneers can protect cracked or chipped teeth or those with thin enamel, helping to prevent further damage or tooth loss.

 

What are Implants?

 

Dental implants are one of the fastest-growing dental procedures in many years! Implants are biocompatible, permanent solutions to damaged or missing teeth and are as stable and reliable as natural, healthy teeth. Titanium posts are inserted into the jaw where a tooth is missing or has been extracted and then a crown is added that is indistinguishable from a natural tooth. 

The process can be lengthy–from three months to a year–and is more expensive than some other replacement procedures. Discuss dental implants with your cosmetic dentist to determine if this treatment option it’s right for you!

 

 

Does Dental Insurance Pay for Cosmetic Dentistry?

 

In many cases, yes. If a cosmetic procedure repairs or restores damaged teeth, many insurance policies will cover the treatment to correct those repairs. Teeth whitening or dental implants are generally not covered. 

However, the only way to find out if your treatment plan would be covered is to contact your insurance company with specific information and let them guide you on your coverage. Our team here at TLC Dental Center can also help you navigate your dental insurance benefits and determine if the cosmetic dentistry you may need is covered.

 

Can a Gap Between My Front Teeth Be Closed Without Braces?

 

Yes! And no one will even be able to remember that gap after a while! There are two procedures to choose from: bonding or veneers. Bonding is quick and lasts between four to eight years. Veneers take a few visits but last about 15 years. Discuss these options with your dentist and then choose what’s best for you!

 

Will People Know I’ve Had Cosmetic Treatments?

 

If you use a professional, experienced cosmetic dentist (like Dr. Kardon), no one will know. Plus, the procedures and materials are constantly improving to perfectly match surrounding teeth. The shine on the surfaces of the veneers, crowns, and bonding resins are glossed to match the rest of the natural teeth. You will be able to smile with confidence!

 

Is Cosmetic Dentistry, Such as Implants, Painful?

 

Many people avoid any kind of dentistry out of fear of pain. But dentists today have many ways to deal with this, plus cosmetic dentists have less invasive techniques available to them now.

Here at TLC Dental Center, we offer conscious sedation dentistry, also known as oral sedation. This sedation keeps the patient awake, yet very relaxed. Some patients choose to nap while the dentist works! This is a perfect solution for those who have a great deal of fear about dentists and dental procedures. 

There is no need to go without the treatment that will give you a beautiful smile. Many patients have already found that they can get the treatment they need for far less time and money than they expected. We can work with you to schedule your appointments at times convenient to you and can also coordinate with your insurance company.

 

Call us or use the online form to schedule a consultation with Dr. Kardon. We can’t wait to meet you and answer all of your questions about cosmetic dentistry!