Cosmetic dentistry is dentistry that focuses on improving the aesthetic qualities of your teeth and overall smile. Some examples of cosmetic dental treatments include:
- Composite Tooth-Colored Fillings
- Dental Crowns & Bridges
- Dental Implants
- Inlays & Onlays
- Teeth Whitening
As you have probably noticed, the aforementioned cosmetic dental procedures are all intended to improve the aesthetics of your smile by correcting structural defects, removing decay, repairing damage, and properly aligning your teeth. Because of these reasons, cosmetic dentistry also offers a number of oral health benefits. For starters, teeth that have been recently cleaned and that are properly aligned are much easier to keep clean and there is less chance that decay-causing bacteria will get caught between hard to reach places. Also, properly aligned teeth make eating and speaking easier, and reduce additional strain on your TMJ.
Did You Know?
Cosmetic dentistry has been around for thousands of years. In fact, ancient Romans fabricated dentures out of ivory and bone to replace missing teeth back in 700 BC. They also used gold for fillings and dental crowns. Nowadays, cosmetic dentistry has many more modern options available.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Am I a candidate for cosmetic dentistry?
You may be a candidate for cosmetic dentistry if you are looking to improve the appearance of your smile. Correcting structural issues, properly aligning your teeth, removing stains, and treating decay are all different cosmetic options for improving the appearance of your smile. Ideal candidates for cosmetic dentistry are in good oral health, however our dentists can help you improve your oral health if needed prior to receiving any cosmetic dental treatment.
What cosmetic dental options does Bethesda Family Dentistry offer?
Bethesda Family Dentistry offers the following cosmetic dental options:
- Composite fillings: dental fillings that are tooth-colored and will blend in with the natural color of your teeth
- Dental crowns & bridges: a dental crown is a cap that will fit over a single tooth, while a dental bridge is made of multiple crowns and is used to fill in gaps left behind by missing teeth
- Dentures: partial and removable dentures are used to replace missing teeth
- Dental implants: artificial tooth roots used to replace missing teeth and provide additional strength and restored function
- Inlays and Onlays: large fillings that are bonded to the surface of your teeth to correct defects
- Veneers: porcelain shells that are adhered to the surface of your teeth to correct the color, size, and shape of your teeth
- Teeth whitening: procedure that removes stains and brightens the appearance of your smile
Which cosmetic dental option is best for me?
Choosing the best cosmetic dental option for you will depend upon your current smile, budget, and treatment goals. Some cosmetic dental options can treat a multitude of issues, while others only remedy a single issue. For example, teeth whitening only corrects discoloration, while porcelain veneers can correct discoloration, alignment, and structural issues.
To find the best cosmetic dental option, you will want to consider what it is about your smile you are looking to change. Try asking yourself what aspects about your smile you think need improvement and how you would like them to be improved. Then you can discuss this with our dentists and we can help decide on the best cosmetic dental treatment for you.
Another key factor in deciding which option is best for you is to consider what your budget is. Cosmetic dentistry has many different treatment options and these different treatment options all have different prices. The good thing about this is that you are certain to find a cosmetic dental option that fits both your treatment goals and your budget.
What can I expect when receiving cosmetic dental treatment from Bethesda Family Dentistry?
Your expectations for cosmetic dental care depend upon the treatment you decide on. Some cosmetic dental options can be completed in a minimally-invasive nature that only requires one dental appointment, while other options require slightly more invasive procedures and multiple dental appointments. Once again, your treatment goals will dictate which cosmetic dental option is right for you. No matter what option you choose, our dentists will thoroughly explain what your expectations should be and will answer any questions about the procedure that you may have.
What can I expect after receiving cosmetic dental treatment from Bethesda Family Dentistry?
After receiving cosmetic dental treatment, you may be given post-treatment guidelines to follow. The exact guidelines will depend on the type and extent of treatment you had. Most post-treatment guidelines deal with temporary diet restrictions, a modified oral health routine, and possible temporary lifestyle changes (such as taking time off work or school).
In addition to the post-treatment guidelines, you will also want to keep up with your oral health routine to make the results of your cosmetic dental treatment last longer. An ideal oral health routine consists of brushing twice daily for two minutes at time, flossing once daily, and visiting Bethesda Family Dentistry at least once every six months for your dental checkup and professional cleaning.
How long will cosmetic dental treatment last?
The span of time for which your cosmetic dental treatment will last depends upon the type of treatment, the way your body responds to said treatment, and your oral health habits. Some cosmetic dental treatments, such as teeth whitening, have a much shorter lifespan than others, such as dental implants. You will want to take the lifespan of each treatment in account when deciding on which is best for you because some treatments may have lower upfront costs but require more replacements over a certain time period when compared to other methods.
Also, certain types of cosmetic dental treatments are temporary and others are permanent. Temporary treatments, like teeth whitening, do not permanently alter the structure of your teeth. Permanent restorations, on the other hand, will permanently change the structure of your teeth. Some examples of permanent treatments are veneers and dental crowns. Both veneers and dental crowns require some enamel modification before their application, making them irreversible treatments.
Will cosmetic dentistry hurt?
At Bethesda Family Dentistry, we will keep you as comfortable as possible during your cosmetic dental treatment. Some cosmetic dental procedures may require the use of anesthetics or sedation to keep you comfortable, while others do not. Also, depending on the nature of your cosmetic dental treatment, we will provide you with guidelines for after your procedure to help manage any possible discomfort you may feel.
How much will cosmetic dentistry cost?
As mentioned before, the cost of cosmetic dentistry will vary depending on the type of treatment you decide upon. Some treatments may be less expensive than others. It is also important to note that the majority of cosmetic dental treatments are not covered by dental insurance because they are considered to be elective treatments. However, Bethesda Family Dentistry does offer financing options to help you get the cosmetic dental treatment you’ve always dreamed of.
For a qualified, experienced, and caring approach to cosmetic dentistry, schedule a consultation with one of our dentists at either our Ferndale Bethesda Family Dentistry office in Bethesda or our Executive Bethesda Family Dentistry office in North Bethesda.