Cosmetic Dentistry

The ideal smile is bright and white, with teeth that are properly aligned, in good condition and proportional to each other. However, congenital issues, injuries, and oral diseases can interfere with a patient’s smile, making them dissatisfied with its appearance. Cosmetic dentistry can help.

Cosmetic dentistry may use a variety of interventions to address aesthetic flaws in the smile. This specialty can focus on a single concern or correct multiple problems at once and overhaul your smile. If you are dissatisfied with your smile’s appearance, explore all of the benefits that cosmetic dentistry has to offer!

Problems Addressed In Cosmetic Dentistry

Multiple aesthetic defects can affect your smile’s appearance, and cosmetic dentistry may remedy a number of these, including:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Cracked teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Stained teeth
  • Misaligned teeth
  • Undersized teeth

Keep in mind that the materials and techniques used in interventions to treat these problems result in a lifelike appearance, so it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to detect a treated tooth from its biological neighbor.

At your initial consultation, Dr. Nathanson will ask you about your smile goals in addition to examining your smile. We encourage you to be an active participant in your treatment, which helps in the effort to achieve your treatment goals.

Treatment Approaches

Depending on the patient’s needs and goals, the dentist may incorporate a variety of interventions into the treatment plan, such as the following:

Teeth Whitening

Eliminates stains from the surfaces of teeth.

Veneers

Conceal flaws, like chips and cracks.

Restorations

Including dental crowns and dental bridges, to repair damaged tooth material or replace missing teeth.

Alignment treatments

May include orthodontic approaches like Invisalign or Six Month Smiles that reposition the teeth, or Snap On Smiles, which hide crooked teeth.

In framing your smile, your gums also play an important role in your smile’s appearance. As such, these tissues may also be targeted with cosmetic interventions, such as gum lifts to remove excess gum tissue or gum grafting to replace.

Combining Interventions For Smile Makeovers

Some patients may only need to address one or two aspects of their smile’s appearance, such as the shade of their teeth or a single cracked tooth. However, other patients may need more extensive treatment in order to significantly enhance their smiles.

In such cases, Dr. Nathanson can combine any of the cosmetic dentistry treatments described above, along with other interventions, to attain your ideal smile.

When multiple treatments will be used, the patient may need to be prepared for a longer treatment timeline that may include several appointments.

Additionally, the sequencing of treatments must be taken into consideration. For example, teeth whitening needs to happen prior to veneer placement because veneers do not respond to teeth whitening agents.

FAQs about Cosmetic Dentistry

What is cosmetic dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry is the dental specialty that focuses solely on your smile’s appearance. While other fields of dentistry aim to restore functioning and structural integrity to the teeth, cosmetic dentistry is primarily concerned with enhancing aesthetics. Cosmetic dentistry may correct issues including damage to the teeth, discoloration and problems with the alignment or proportions of the teeth. These interventions can be used individually or combined to improve on multiple aspects of the patient’s smile.

What is a dental crown?

Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps that are placed on top of a biological tooth after a large area of decay has been removed. A dentist may also place a crown to protect a broken tooth or following a root canal to prevent breakage of the tooth after that treatment. Crowns can be made of many different materials, but our practice prefers to use full zirconia. Known as a synthetic replacement for diamonds (cubic zirconia), this material features significant strength, durability and stability.

What is a dental veneer?

Dental veneers are versatile tools that are bonded atop biological teeth to hide a number of flaws. Our practice uses Lumineers, a revolutionary device that is as thin as a contact lens and requires no alterations of the teeth. The process of bonding Lumineers to your teeth requires no anesthetic and is completed with a curing light. This treatment can dramatically improve your smile with minimal discomfort and in a relatively short period of time. Furthermore, when you take good care of them, Lumineers can last for up to 20 years.

What is a dental bridge?

Dental bridges are restorations that replace a missing tooth with a pontic (artificial crown) secured by crowns that are placed on adjoining teeth. Our practice places full zirconia bridges for optimal appearance and structural durability. The process of getting a dental bridge takes place over at least two appointments. At the first session, Dr. Nathanson will take dental impressions that will determine the design of your bridge and prepare the abutment teeth for crown placement. Patients also receive a temporary bridge to wear until their permanent bridge is ready, a few weeks later. At that point, the patient returns to our office to have the permanent bridge bonded in place.