Cosmetic Dentistry in Shelby Township, Michgian
One of the most commonly asked questions in our office is about cosmetic dentistry. In other words what are my options to improve and keep my smile? There are actually several things which can be done to improve the smile. Each one is successful and are limited to what they can do.
Whitening or bleaching your teeth involves using a “supercharged” peroxide which cleans out the pores of the teeth allowing them to be the brightest possible. While there are several techniques available the most common one involves using an in office procedure to make custom stints (mouthguard) of your teeth. The active gel is placed in the custom guard and worn at home for a period of two to three weeks. Usually after a year or so a touch-up procedure can be done to keep them brilliantly white. The difference between those made at the dental office and the “store or TV” bought products is in the professional supervision of a dental professional. The trays are uncomfortable in the generic products and the material is less effective. Cavities should be taken care of before the whitening process is started and the whitening agent won’t change the color of fillings or crowns.
Plastic Resin Fillings
Resin fillings are available which are almost a perfect match for the color of your teeth. Under most circumstances they can be used in place of the old silver fillings. They are placed like putty in your teeth and “cured” by a blue light which makes them hard. The old type of plastics turned yellow over time making people look like they had stuff stuck between their teeth but the newer plastic resins are more color stable over time. These fillings used in the back teeth have limitations in the size of the filling they are replacing.
Porcelain Onlay and Crowns
If the filling is large the tooth can have a full porcelain onlay or crown. These are beautiful and look like a natural tooth. They are stronger than regular black or resin fillings and can have a better appearance than porcelain fused to metal crowns. These are bonded to the tooth and because they are made in the laboratory they are accurate and very durable.
Bonding involves painting a putty-like plastic over the teeth to cover up the old color and sometimes even change the shape of the teeth. This plastic resin is applied to the teeth in an artistic way to form and enhance a person’s smile. This plastic will eventually wear and will need to be replaced or added to over the years. Most of the time you can expect 3-5 years of wear depending upon your particular situation.
Veneers are a porcelain covering that almost fuses to the teeth. These are the most durable and beautiful of all the cosmetic procedures. The porcelain allows for natural light to penetrate through the tooth and veneer giving it a very natural appearance. The porcelain veneer doesn’t darken over the years from aging or staining like natural teeth and resin fillings do.
Have you been unhappy with your smile because your teeth are disproportionate in size to your face, or are they too dark? Are your teeth spaced or do you feel ashamed to smile and hold your hand over your mouth so people don’t notice your teeth? If you answered yes to any of these questions cosmetic dentistry could be for you. It has changed the way many people view themselves leading to a more self-confident life. . If you have any questions you can call me at 586.247.3500 or stop into the office to take some free literature.