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What Does a Cosmetic Dentist Do? Procedures and Benefits

Cosmetic dentistry is becoming increasingly popular as people want a whiter smile and straighter bite. However, what does cosmetic dentistry involve? The reality is that a cosmetic dentist is charged with providing a wide range of services to a diverse array of clients. In fact, it is much more common for an individual to visit a cosmetic dentist during their lifetime than in the past due to improvements in dental care and greater access to these important services. Also, many dentists, such as a Rutherford cosmetic dentist, Smiles by Rizzo, offer both general dentistry services in addition to cosmetic dental care so that many of your dental needs can be addressed. The goal is to create your best smile and provide you with confidence in your daily life.

According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, cosmetic dentistry is aimed at creating a positive change to a person’s teeth and smile, ensuring that they are able to maintain their overall health, function, and appearance. In keeping with this goal, cosmetic dentists may perform a wide variety of procedures including the following.

Teeth Whitening. This is by far the most common service provided by cosmetic dentists. Often times, patients want whiter teeth for weddings, graduations, job interviews or other special occasions. Teeth naturally become dull and stained over time, particularly from things such as drinking coffee or tea and smoking. Cosmetic whitening lasts longer than over-the-counter products and can make teeth several shades whiter in just one visit.

Straightening. This is probably the procedure that is fastest growing in terms of popularity. Traditionally, straightening has been done when a person is a child through the use of braces. However, products such as Invisalign have resulted in many adults making the decision to opt for a straighter smile. Modern straightening can be done more easily and in a less noticeable manner, which also contributes to the overall popularity of the service.

Dental Implants. Dental implants are a great option for those that have lost teeth. While not always a cosmetic option, dental implants can help restore a patient’s smile and boost their self confidence. All on 4 implants are a more comprehensive version of this that aim to fix a smile all at once, no matter how severe the complications are.

Bonding. Bonding is a process where a dentist applies a resin substance to a tooth in order to repair its shape. The substance is then hardened and colored to match the tooth, making it look natural. This can be a useful procedure when a tooth has become cracked, chipped, or has a gap.

Veneers. Veneers are essentially thin pieces of porcelain that are utilized to replicate the look of natural teeth. They can easily be sculpted or molded in ways that change the shape, size, or color of teeth. Veneers are often selected as an option to improve the look of teeth; however, they are also quite useful in preserving enamel as well, preventing cavities.

Inlays & Onlays. These are methods of performing fillings in situations where the undamaged portion of a tooth is not significant enough to support a traditional filling. They are produced in labs and sculpted to fit the tooth. They can be made from various materials such as gold, porcelain, or composite resins. The porcelain and composite ones are often times more cosmetically appealing than traditional fillings or the gold inlays and onlays. While being made, the patient generally has a temporary form of a filling. The inlay or onlay is later fit to the tooth with dental cement. A successful inlay or onlay will contribute to shape restoration, strengthening teeth, and prevent further deterioration.

Gingivoplasty. When people think of dentists, they naturally think of teeth. However, dentists also care for various other structures of the mouth including the gums. Gingivoplasty is a process where a laser is used in order to cut away portions of the gum, shaping them to be more symmetrical. This can be done to give a person a nicer smile or can be done in situations such as where the gum does not naturally lift when the permanent teeth come in. It is relatively painless and less invasive than other methods.

With such a wide variety of procedures, the life of a cosmetic dentist is definitely interesting. More people are making the decision to consult a cosmetic dentist in order to attain a number of benefits including a better bite, more beautiful smile, and healthier teeth. Cosmetic dentistry can provide people with greater self-confidence and a number of health benefits. Furthermore, cosmetic dentists have additional training that enables them to perform more complex procedures. Thus, people often go to cosmetic dentists with greater confidence that their individual dental needs can be satisfactorily addressed.