For many people, maintaining a healthy glowing smile is important not only from a health perspective and as part of your general wellbeing, but also for aesthetic purposes. A clean, bright smile is a fundamental part of overall appearance and a primary concern for a lot of dental patients. This is where the services of a cosmetic dentist can cause a vast improvement. If you have chipped, damaged or discoloured teeth or just want to improve the appearance of your smile in some way, cosmetic dentistry might be an option for you.
What is cosmetic dentistry?
Unlike general dentistry or specialised dentistry, which are concerned with the health of your teeth, gums and jaw, cosmetic dentistry is the field of dentistry that deals with the overall appearance of your teeth and smile. Discoloured, misaligned, misshapen, damaged or missing teeth can have a negative effect on a person's self-confidence and may cause them to actively avoid smiling or showing their teeth. These ailments can also cause knock-on health effects, both oral and otherwise, and in severe cases can impact on your ability to chew, speak, bite or swallow.
Cosmetic dentists offer a range of treatments and procedures aimed at treating these issues in order to restore the tooth's functionality and improve the overall aesthetics of your smile.
Cosmetic dentistry is carried out by a general practice dentist, who is trained in the various specialised procedures it entails. The Australian Dental Association states that there is no specialist category of 'cosmetic dentist', but the term tends to be used by those practitioners who have a focused interest in this discipline of the profession.
Can anyone get cosmetic dentistry?
Most dental patients will be able to benefit from some cosmetic procedures but this route isn't always the right choice for every patient. Before undergoing any cosmetic procedure, your oral hygiene must be of a sufficient standard and your dentist must be satisfied that you're not showing any signs of tooth decay or gum disease.
Occasionally cosmetic dentistry may not be a suitable option for some patients. On consultation with your dentist, he or she will work with you to determine whether or not you are a suitable candidate for cosmetic dentistry.
What cosmetic dental procedures are available?
Cosmetic dentists employ a wide range of procedures to treat teeth that are misshapen, stained, damaged or have otherwise been harmed through an accident or other means. Depending on your individual needs your dentist may recommend a single procedure or a combination of procedures.
At Mount Lawley Dental Clinic, the Cosmetic Dental Services available include:
What are the advantages of cosmetic dentistry?
The main benefit of cosmetic dentistry is in helping to improve your appearance. However by closing or altogether removing small spaces and gaps between teeth there is also less room for food and other substances to collect, making brushing and flossing easier and more effective. This therefore improves the health of your mouth as well as the appearance. Certain procedures, such as implants, can also slow down or halt the progression of bone loss where teeth are missing.
For many patients, cosmetic dentistry also offers benefits for their confidence, as the treatments improve the overall appearance of their teeth and smile.
Is cosmetic dentistry right for me?
If you have damaged, worn down or missing teeth, or are unhappy with the appearance of your smile, cosmetic dentistry may have a solution for you. Your dentist can discuss your particular problems and explain what treatment options are available, as well as advising on the costs associated with each treatment and what level of improvement you should be able to achieve.