Stained, worn, discolored, broken, chipped, misshapen, misaligned, or gapped teeth could stand between you and a healthy, beautiful smile. Your self-confidence and public perception will also be affected since your smile is usually the first feature anyone notices. Not to worry, though, because there is a solution. If you wish to have a sparkling and attractive smile, the best thing to do is visit a cosmetic dentist for a smile make-over. The best cosmetic dentist will not only conduct the procedures required to give you the best outcome, but they will also explain why the procedure is necessary. When you see a cosmetic dentist, you will have to choose the dental procedure you want them to perform from the various cosmetic dental service options available. Here are the prevalent dental services considered cosmetic and why you may need them.

Gummy Smile Treatment

if you have protruding gum tissue, you may feel uncomfortable smiling. Although everyone has their own description of what an attractive smile entails and what they consider too much gum tissue, a gummy smile generally means a smile in which the gums appear too exposed and the teeth too short. If the gum tissue along your teeth is excessive, your cosmetic dentist can reshape them through gum contouring procedures. They will reposition the gum line through a non-surgical process that removes overextended, unsightly gums.  They will measure the gum tissue’s thickness and trim off the excess tissue to one millimeter. This might not be successful in some conditions, and the dentist may recommend more aggressive procedures.

Crown lightening is another treatment procedure for a gummy smile. It entails flipping open the gingiva and recontouring the gum tissue, exposing a significant part of your tooth structure.

Sometimes, gummy smiles result from deep overbites that expose the gums and upper jaw. The dentist can fix this using Invisalign braces by aligning your teeth. Your upper lip being so thin could also cause your gums to be significantly exposed. The dentist can fix the problem of a thin lip with dermal fillers like Juvederm, Restylane, or Belotero.

Visit your cosmetic dentist to discuss what treatment option meets your needs. Most dentists prefer Belotero since it gives a more natural look. The results of a gummy smile treatment are permanent; therefore, you will not need to be worried about excess gum tissue in the future.

Dental Veneers

Most people have considered dental veneers the most transformative and versatile treatment option in cosmetic dentistry. A dental veneer is a thin porcelain-made shell that fits over the facial tooth surface and is attached to place permanently. Veneers are ideal for correcting several dental problems for patients who wish to achieve a detailed smile makeover.  They are so thin; thus, you do not have to be concerned about them enlarging your teeth size. Veneers can alter your teeth's position, spacing, color, and shape and enhance your smile’s beauty. These appliances fit perfectly with your gums and are deemed more robust and durable. The porcelain does not change its color or stain over time. Apart from enhancing your teeth’s appearance, dental veneers also protect a damaged tooth surface.

Whether your teeth are stained, chipped, broken, gapped, or discolored, a cosmetic dentist can help fix all these issues with dental veneers. The dentist will gently file down your tooth enamel and then take an impression of it. They will send the impression to a dental laboratory for custom dental veneers. The dentist will fit you with temporary dental veneers until the laboratory makes the permanent ones. Once the permanent veneers are ready, the dentist will cement them to the front surface of the teeth, altering their length, shape, or color. Veneers are the best option for persons with dark stains that will not disappear even after the teeth bleaching process and fractured or chipped teeth. They will help you achieve a perfect smile and a more natural appearance.

Note the cosmetic dentist must first determine whether veneers are the best option for your problem. Essentially, they are ideal if you wish to have a long-term, attractive solution for your teeth.  They are usually referred to as Hollywood teeth, and the process for dental veneer placement can cost between five hundred and one thousand three hundred dollars per tooth.

Invisalign Braces

Many people think that braces are meant for children. However, many adults are going for it to achieve the smile they have always wanted. Invisalign braces function like traditional metal braces. They offer an ideal option if you wish to achieve a beautiful, straight smile since nobody can notice you are wearing them, unlike metal braces. Invisalign braces are a series of clear, custom-made aligners made from polyurethane resin. They snuggly fit over your teeth and gently and gradually pull them into the proper position over time.

Invisalign braces can be removed. Therefore, you can maintain maximum hygiene and lower the risk of gum disease or tooth decay. Additionally, these braces have smooth edges that prevent food from being trapped. The smooth edges also make the Invisalign comfortable to wear. Wearing Invisalign braces will also not restrict you on the types of food to eat. You will just need to take them off and eat anything you wish.

The dentist will kick off the treatment with Invisalign braces by creating a model of your smile. After that, they will create customized sequent trays to align over your teeth. During the treatment process, the braces will keep being replaced after every two-three weeks until the dentist achieves the desired results. If you wish to correct your distorted smile for professional or social reasons, Invisalign braces provide an easy way of achieving that without embarrassment or fear. The outcome is also remarkable.

Note that Invisalign braces are not only meant for aesthetic purposes. They can correct misaligned teeth that cause pain, such as chronic headaches. The advantages, therefore, make this dental service worth your investment.

Averagely, Invisalign braces cost between one thousand eight hundred and ten thousand dollars, while the placement procedure costs between three thousand and nine thousand dollars based on:

  • The geographical location
  • The severity of your dental problem
  • How long you will need the treatment– bite correction vs. straightening teeth 
  • The general condition of your oral health 
  • The cosmetic dentist’s experience

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is also known as teeth bleaching. It is among the popular choices for persons who wish to undergo an easy and quick way of altering their smile. Teeth can easily be stained and turn yellow. Cigarettes, soda, coffee, and other foods can lead to the gradual darkening of your teeth. Additionally, fluoride, teeth grinding, and certain medications may also wear the enamel, exposing the yellow-colored dentin. The enamel can also wear off as you age. However, although that could be the case, it should not be the cause of you settling for yellowed or discolored teeth. With teeth whitening/bleaching from a professional cosmetic dentist, discolored or dull teeth will be a thing of the past. What you will achieve is a beautiful, bright smile.

Apart from being easy and quick, teeth whitening/bleaching is also an inexpensive way of enhancing your teeth's whiteness and brightness. Your cosmetic dentist could present various teeth whitening processes, including Zoom and Kor whitening. The Kor whitening process uses a strong bleaching gel. On the other hand, Zoom whitening entails using a LED light-activated technology to activate a hydrogen peroxide whitening varnish. Unlike Zoom whitening, Kor whitening reaches the tooth core without using lasers or lights. Both whitening treatment options come with a desensitization solution to ensure the process goes smoothly and the desired outcome is achieved without the patient experiencing sensitivity. They can also work on all patients and have realized an exceptional outcome for persons with deep stains and sensitivity. These processes take about one hour to complete. 

Teeth whitening can be conducted at home or in the office, but it is wise to have your cosmetic dentist conduct the teeth bleaching process. Bleaching products bought over the counter do not give the brightening that many people desire. Teeth bleaching costs about five hundred dollars, while over-the-counter teeth whitening or bleaching products can cost about three to fifty dollars.

Dental Implants

Living without even one tooth can impact your confidence, making you uncomfortable smiling or speaking naturally. Not only is missing a tooth or teeth a cosmetic issue, but it poses a threat to your general dental/oral health. Existing teeth may shift to occupy the gap left by the missing tooth, thereby altering your smile. With time, you may also experience bone loss if your jaw is no longer needed for tooth/teeth support. Additionally, if you have missing teeth, you are at a higher risk of developing gum disease.

If you have lost one or more teeth, either through decay, extraction, age, or injury, undergoing the dental implant procedure can be the ideal solution you need. Dental implants are synthetic structures affixed to the jaw to be a support for artificial teeth. Essentially, a dental implant occupies the part of the tooth structure that is usually occupied by the natural tooth root. As the jawbone continues to heal, it grows around the implanted metal post, holding it securely in the jaw and providing a foundation for a replacement tooth. Dental implants mimic the tooth's natural structure; thus, they feel and look like your original teeth. This allows you to resume chewing, biting, speaking, or smiling just like before. A cosmetic dentist can make dental implants resemble your original teeth, assisting you in addressing your dental issues.

In particular cases, however, dental implant placement may be an unideal solution for missing teeth and cosmetic appearance. If your cosmetic dentist says implants are not the best option, they will present other options that will entirely reconstruct your teeth and help you achieve a new smile. The dental implant placement procedure costs between one thousand two hundred and fifty and three thousand dollars.

Enamel Bonding

Enamel bonding/dental bonding/composite bonding is also another best procedure for persons with chipped teeth or decayed teeth. The material used for composite bonding is generally the same as what is used for dental fillings. The materials can be molded, meaning your cosmetic dentist can shape it to achieve the ideal, attractive shape.

When conducting this dental process, the dentist will apply a tooth-colored, putt-like resin (long-lasting plastic material) to your tooth and harden it using a laser or ultraviolet light, cementing the material to your tooth. They will then trim, shape, and polish it. As implied above, composite bonding repairs decayed, cracked, misshapen, or chipped teeth. It also is an ideal cosmetic replacement for or alternative to silver fillings or amalgam. This procedure takes about thirty to sixty minutes to complete and costs between a hundred and four hundred dollars per tooth.

The disadvantage of this procedure is that the enamel bonding lifetime is not nearly as long as that of dental veneers, and thus most people go for dental veneers instead.

Enamel Abrasion Treatment

The enamel abrasion procedure is another way of removing discoloration. The dentist uses fine pumice placed in a micro-abrasion machine during this treatment procedure to eliminate superficial stains.

This procedure eradicates surface stains from coffee, soda, wine, and tobacco products. However, enamel abrasion does not work for stains inside the tooth or intrinsic stains. Your dentist will know what stain removal method is best for your situation.

Dental Crowns

A crown is also known as a cap. It fits over to replace the whole damaged or decayed tooth above your gum line, reinstating its appearance, strength, size, and shape.

Crowns hold cracked teeth in place or prevent weak teeth from breaking. They may be cosmetically used to cover severely discolored or misshapen teeth. They are usually made from ceramic, resin, porcelain-attached-to-metal, or metal and cost approximately five hundred to nine hundred dollars each.

Inlays and Onlays

Inlays and Onlays are also known as dental fillings. They are made from composite materials, porcelain, or gold and fill damaged or decayed teeth. The dentist will have dental fillings molded in a dental lab and bond them into place during a dental visit. The dental filling is termed an Inlay when the material is cemented within the center of a tooth. And when the filling covers the biting surface or includes one or several points of the tooth, it is called an Onlay. Dental fillings preserve a larger percentage of the natural tooth and are a good alternative to dental crowns. This dental procedure costs approximately six hundred and fifty to one thousand two hundred dollars per tooth.

Cosmetic Orthodontic Treatment

Orthodontic treatment is not only meant for children. More grown-ups are also seeking this treatment procedure, and it can be done for cosmetic reasons.  This treatment procedure is commonly conducted to correct misaligned, crooked, or buck teeth or imbalances in the mouth.

Cosmetic Enamel Shaping

Enamel shaping is also known as teeth shaping. This procedure entails the cosmetic dentist reshaping your teeth by filing or removing some of the enamel using a sanding drill, laser, or abrasive strips. Usually, the enamel shaping process is not painful, so no anesthetic is required. The process also produces immediate results. Enamel shaping can be conducted to correct slightly cracked, chipped, or crooked teeth or shorten a long tooth.  The cost for cosmetic enamel shaping ranges from fifty to five hundred dollars per tooth based on the amount of work the dentist needs to do, plus the dentist’s reputation and expertise.

Surgical Dental Treatments

Some dental surgical treatments are only conducted to correct cosmetic issues. If you need to undergo a dental surgical procedure, you should go to a cosmetic dentist who can explain what surgery best suits your needs.

How Long Will Treatment Last

Cosmetic dental services/procedures vary in the period they take to complete. Some procedures will only take a few minutes or hours, whereas others will last months or years. Your cosmetic dentist should communicate in advance and be honest about how long your treatment option will take to complete, and the period you will need to heal. Also, note that cosmetic dental services may not be covered by insurance or may have huge out-of-pocket expenses. This may be one of the factors to consider when choosing what dental procedure to undergo.

Find a Professional Cosmetic Dentist Near Me

If you have crooked, decayed, misshapen, misaligned, or decayed teeth that make you unhappy with your appearance, it may be time to consider seeing a cosmetic dentist. There are various options available to enhance your smile and appearance, from dental implants to dental crowns to veneers and dentures. If you are unsure what treatment option best suits your needs, your dentist will help you make the right decision. If you are looking to obtain cosmetic dentistry services in Los Angeles, Carson, Torrance, or Lomita, CA, or would like to learn about the various cosmetic dental service options, call the professional cosmetic dentists and Washington Dental for help. We offer a wide array of cosmetic dental services to accommodate a wide range of patient needs. Additionally, our services are reliable, comfortable, and efficient, thanks to the advanced dental technology we have embraced. Call us today to book an appointment.