3 Ways to Straighten Your Teeth

3 Ways to Straighten Your Teeth

Do you have crooked teeth? Is it taking a toll on your self-esteem or your social life? It’s time to stop hiding your smile and do something about it! There are three ways a cosmetic dentist can straighten your teeth: veneers, Invisalign, and crowns. We will go into detail about each option below so that you can make an educated decision for yourself!



veneers on teeth

Veneers are custom designed pieces of porcelain that are fitted over the teeth to disguise flaws. Veneers can also be used to change the length, color, shape, opacity or texture of teeth. They are usually made of porcelain, but they can also be made from composite resin. Porcelain is considered more durable than other types because it is more resistant to wear and chipping from rough interactions with food and because it can be buffed with a high shine finish. Veneers correct crooked teeth by concealing them. 

While veneers come in many shapes and sizes to fit each patient’s needs, they must be custom-fitted to each person. A dentist will take an impression of your teeth and use it as a reference for creating porcelain veneers that will fit seamlessly with your smile while also improving its appearance. In order to place your veneers, your dentist will need to then remove a thin layer of enamel. Since enamel does not grow back, this will make veneers a permanent treatment. This means that they will need to be replaced when they wear out in about 10-15 years. 



aligner white

Invisalign is a series of customized plastic aligners that work to straighten teeth without the use of metal braces. Teeth are gently shifted into place by moving them through an “invisible” sequence using clear aligner trays provided by your dentist. The aligners are designed to fit over your teeth comfortably and they allow you to straighten your teeth discreetly. Each dentist may have their own specific rules for using Invisalign, but generally these trays need to be worn up to 22 hours a day for about two weeks before moving on to the next set of plastic trays. 

Wearing Invisalign is a more comfortable option than traditional metal braces, but it is still a type of orthodontic treatment that will take time to achieve the desired results. While veneers can be completed in a few dental appointments, Invisalign treatment generally takes an average of 18 months. However after undergoing Invisalign treatment, you should have straight teeth for the rest of your life if you wear your retainer. 



Crown on tooth

A dentist may recommend crowns to treat serious dental problems such as cracked or severely decayed teeth. They are also used to fix misshapen teeth or crooked teeth. Crowns can be made of porcelain, metal alloys like palladium-gold alloy (or PdA) and zirconium dioxide for more natural looking results. Like veneers, crowns will straighten your teeth by concealing them. However, crows will cover the entire visible portion of your teeth, while veneers only cover the front side. 

Dentists will first remove the decayed or damaged section of your tooth and then prepare it for receiving a crown. A dentist can either make an impression of your teeth to create a custom-fit crown, or they may use a premade version that is available in many different sizes and shapes. In order to attach the new crown, your dentist will need to use a special adhesive and then shape the crown so that it fits comfortably into place. Like veneers, crowns are a permanent restoration that will need to be replaced when they wear out in about 10-15 years. 


Typically, dentist will recommend one of three options to straighten teeth: Veneers, Invisalign or Crowns. The dentist may also offer a combination of the three treatments as well. Remember that your dentist can help you decide which treatment is best for you and schedule an appointment to get started with any necessary dental work.

Dr. Deborah TabbPatients at Bethesda Family Dentistry benefit from the knowledge and experience that only comes from a diverse team. From general dentistry to endodontic, periodontics, and cosmetic dental services, this Bethesda, MD clinic is ready to be the only source you need for all your oral health needs.