If you’re interested in making your smile perfect, you’ll probably need a cosmetic dentistry procedure. You’ll of course have to schedule a consultation with a cosmetic dentist, but here are a few procedures so you can get a general idea of what you might need.

Composite Bonding

Composite bonding (which is also known as tooth or dental bonding or composite veneering) is a procedure that is used as a solution for minor tooth defects and for correcting spacing in teeth.

It involves using composite resin which is a white filling material to completely cover or add to teeth to improve a smile. The color of the resin is matched to your teeth, so it will appear as though it is a natural part of the tooth.

The composite bonding procedure is a quick one requiring only one or two visits to the cosmetic dentist.

The procedure usually begins with the dentist cleaning your teeth thoroughly in preparation for the application of the resin. A very thin layer of enamel might have to be removed in severe cases, however, teeth don’t need to be cut if only minor shape and color changes are needed.

Before the material is added, your teeth will be lightly etched (that is roughened) to aid the adhesion.

After that, adhesive glue will be added to your teeth to help the composite resin material stick to your teeth. Finally, very thin layers of the composite resin are added to the tooth surface while being molded into the ideal shape.

The cosmetic dentist will then cure (i.e quickly harden) the layers of the resin with a special high-intensity light. If needed, you will receive further trimming and shaping to perfect the appearance. After one last polish, the work is done.

You should select a shade of white that is just right for you so the teeth look natural.

BENEFITS: Composite veneers are favoured because they are quick, noninvasive and natural-looking. They are also known for being cheaper than other procedures (like standard veneers).

STANDARD VENEERS

Veneers are thin, custom-designed she’ll coverings that are made of tooth-colored materials attached to the front surface of teeth to improve their appearance. They are commonly referred to as “dental porcelain laminates or simply porcelain veneers).

They are shells that are permanently bonded to teeth to improve their appearance by changing the shape, size, or coloring.

The application of dental veneers is an intensive procedure that requires at least three appointments with the dentist. The first appointment is usually a consultation where you tell the cosmetic dentist what you want and an X-ray scan of your teeth is taken to see if you’re eligible for the procedure.

In the second appointment, a mold or impression of your teeth is taken which will be sent to the laboratory where the veneers will be custom-made. This process usually takes about two to four (2-4) weeks.

To prepare your teeth for the procedure, your teeth are also to be reshaped in an amount that is nearly equal to the thickness of the veneers that are to be bonded to the affected teeth. This is done by trimming down your tooth surface (the enamel) using a grinding device.

In the final appointment, the veneers are applied to your teeth. It will be continuously placed on your tooth to check the fit and coloring while it is being trimmed to achieve a perfect fit. After this, the tooth surface will be polished, cleaned, and roughened before bonding cement is then applied to the veneer, which is in turn placed on your tooth. Once it is properly positioned, a special light beam will be shined on the cement to activate the chemicals, thus hardening it very quickly.

Lastly, excess cement will be removed, your bite will be checked, and it will be ascertained if you need any adjustments. You may be asked by your dentist to return for a follow-up visit in a couple of weeks to check your gums and the veneer placement.

BENEFITS: Veneers are popular because they are stain-resistant, durable, strong and are compatible with the gums.

INVISALIGN

Invisalign is a clear customized aligner, meaning that it fits perfectly to your teeth and is nearly invisible when it is being used. It is not easily noticed when you smile, talk or laugh.

Invisalign can be used to correct a wide range of dental problems. From overbite, underbite, and crossbite problems to gap teeth and crowded teeth. Invisalign can be used to treat them all.

However, when it comes to extreme cases of dental misalignment, Invisalign might not be sufficient to correct the whole problem.

The first step of the procedure is a 3D map of your mouth and jaw being taken by your orthodontist. This image will be used to craft a plan and timeline for the gradual adjustment of your teeth.

The map is also used to create a series of customized mouthguard-like trays which are the clear aligners. The purpose of the aligners is to gradually shift the position of your teeth through the application of pressure.

Depending on the instructions given to you by your orthodontist, the aligners will have to be switched out for new ones every week or so as your teeth are gradually shifting. The aligners have to be worn for about twenty to twenty-two (20-22) hours each day for maximum effect.

Invisalign aligners will make you feel uncomfortable within the first few days of inserting them. You could also experience slight aches in your teeth and gums because of the pressure being applied. This will subside in a few days. If they persist, consult your orthodontist.

BENEFITS: Invisalign aligners are favoured for their discreteness, convenience, quick results and fewer complications.

Other procedures include teeth whitening, implants, enamel abrasion and much more.